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News > Chile

Chile: President Piñera Signs a Bill To Tackle Organized Crime

  • A police officer conducts an operation against drug, Las Condes, Chile, Dec. 26, 2020.

    A police officer conducts an operation against drug, Las Condes, Chile, Dec. 26, 2020. | Photo: Twitter/ @min_interior

Published 28 December 2020

The new norms seek to combat money laundering, terrorism, drug, and human trafficking crimes. 

Chile's President Sebastian Piñera Sunday signed a bill aimed at strengthening police forces and the judicial system's works on fighting organized crime.


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The bill replaces the "Illicit Association" crime with two new legal figures:  the "Association to  Commit a Crime" and the "Criminal Association."

"The 'association to commit a crime' will punish those who organize to commit a simple crime with penalties of up to 5 years, and the 'criminal association' seeks to sanction those who are also part of criminal organizations with penalties of up to 10 years," local outlet Cooperativa explained.

The bill also incorporates "special investigative techniques," such as undercover agents, informants, gang infiltration, and telephone communication interference, which currently require authorization from a guarantee judge. 

The meme reads, "During these days we will be conducting alcohol and narco tests together with Carabineros. Follow the health authority's instructions. Zero tolerance with drugs and alcohol behind the wheel."

This bill was signed a week after two people died as a result of the shootings in Maipu, a neighborhood located in Santiago Metropolitan Region. The police forces considered this event to be a settling of scores between the gangs.

Lawmaker Marcelo Diaz urged the Piñera administration for modifications in the Arms Control Law and the possibility of creating a specialized unit similar to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to combat drug trafficking. 

"While modernizing the law is accepted, we must keep our eyes on the prosecutors and judges, who are the ones who will apply it," Senator Manuel Ossandon said. 

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