Guatemala Cancels Large Scale Prisons Project

Instead plans are underway for the acquisition and installation of high security modules in different parts of the country in order to ease current overcrowding.

Friday, July 26, 2013

It will be the next government who will make the decision to build, the Interior Ministry will leave in place the plans and designs for the prison infrastructure.

"We're giving up on big regional prisons which are dictated in the law (to be implemented), because it takes six months for a tender process for pre-investment and six months in tender processes for designs and plans, in this alone one year is wasted and construction takes two years with a further six months for equipping the building, altogether we are talking about three years. I will lay the cornerstone so that the next government can decide whether to continue with any construction," said Interior Minister, Mauricio López Bonilla.

"Things in Guatemala are made so that nothing at all works and fighting against that is complicated." In Bonilla's opinion a second option would be to construct modules where prisoners could be housed according to their criminal profiling.

"If the President gives the go ahead, we will build these modules in Canada in Zacapa, in Petén and Quetzaltenango, because over there there are very spacious grounds which would allow us to make such constructions very quickly. What we have allocated in the budget is approximately $36 million, I'm talking about 15 modules for 144 inmates," the official added.

More on this topic

Guatemala: Electronic Tagging Project Resurfaces

January 2014

A plan is being prepared to implement a pilot project for electronic ankle tags in the prison system before the end of the year.

By the end of 2014, the Guatemalan government will launch a pilot project to implement electronic tags into the prison system, confirmed the chief of Interior, Mauricio López Bonilla.

Guatemala: Awardee of Prison Contract has Little Experience

December 2012

The tender conditions required proven experience, technical expertise, trained personnel and accreditation in security operations. reports that "Interamerican Investment & Development Corporation (II & DC), a company that won the tender to improve prison infrastructure in ten departments worth Q543.1 million, was created in Nevada, United States two years ago, with a capital of U.S.

Tender for Prisons in Guatemala

July 2012

An announced has been made for five prisons with technology in access points, X-rays, biometric identification, and molecular analyzers for drugs, explosives and weapons.

The project announced by Interior Minister Mauricio López Bonilla is part of the modernization of the prison system.

Guatemala to Build a Maximum Security Prison

January 2012

The project, which is in the planning stage, is for accommodation for about a thousand prisoners.

The overpopulation seen in various jails around the country has forced the authorities to seek options to address the problem. Currently, among the Ministry of Interior’s plans is the construction of a maximum security prison.

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