More Than Two Tons of Cocaine Seized in Colombia Near the Panamanian Coast

first_imgBy Dialogo November 01, 2010 In a naval operation in the region of Urabá (in the northwest), on the border with Panama, the Colombian authorities seized 2,326 kilos of cocaine concealed on a speedboat, the Colombian Navy reported. “The ‘go-fast’ boat, which was crewed by five individuals, was detected by Colombian Air Force aircraft while another boat was finalizing transfer of the drugs. The boat was apprehended near the municipality of Acandí, on the border with Panama,” according to a statement. “In the vessel’s interior were found ninety-two sacks containing the alkaloid, with an approximate value of 58 million dollars on the international black market, communications equipment, and twenty-eight cans of fuel with which to reach Central America,” the statement specified. Although the navy did not indicate to which drug-trafficking organization the seized cocaine is believed to belong, it noted that the vessel with the drugs and its occupants were taken to the Urabá Coast Guard Station, “where they were turned over to the competent authorities.” So far this year, forty tons of cocaine have been found in Colombia’s Caribbean waters as it was being sent by sea to Europe and the United States. Its value on the international market is over one billion dollars, according to the authorities.last_img read more

Honduran authorities reduce extortion by blocking cell phone service at prisons

first_img Honduran security forces have made significant progress in the fight against extortion by blocking cell phone calls from prisons. Incarcerated gang leaders often use cell phones to give orders to their fellow gang members. Prisoners are prohibited from having cell phones, but some incarcerated gang members have friends and relatives smuggle the devices to them in prison. They use the cell phones to call other gang members who are not incarcerated and direct them to commit crimes, including extortion. Blocking cell phone calls from prisons is proving to be an effective tactic to protect the civilian population, President Juan Orlando Hernández said on May 5 in a report on his first 100 days in office, according to a statement from Office of the Presidency of the Republic. Authorities have blocked cellular phone service at 24 prisons throughout the country, and security forces have captured 170 suspected extortionists, the president said. To further improve security, authorities plan on launching a “blacklist” system, disabling stolen cell phones so criminals cannot use them, the president said. Though authorities have made good progress in improving public safety, security forces remain vigilant, Hernández said. “We understand that the safety-related issues that have been resolved are not enough to restore peace and tranquility,” the president said.” “There is still more to do and we are working hard because it is not a fight that we will win overnight.” The perception that a Honduran city is so violent “is unacceptable, and we are changing these things,” President Hernández told La Tribuna in an interview which was published in early May. Honduran authorities are working hard to improve public safety and are making progress, Ayestas said. “The authorities want results. Criminals are being investigated, arrested, and taken to court,” Ayestas said. Security initiatives are bringing down the violence. In 2012, Honduras averaged 21 killings a day. So far in 2014, the country is averaging 14 killings a year, a 33 percent decrease. “Impunity no longer exists in this country. No more mourning, no more blood, no more displacement due to insecurity”, Hernández said during a May 8 ceremony at Campo Marte in Tegucigalpa to commemorate adding two more squadrons to Operation Morazán, a security initiative. “The more we fight crime, the more criminals are going to attack, but we will not retreat a single inch,” Hernández added. I love the army a lot Hooray for order. They are actual cops, not like the ones in Venezuela that are only in it when there’s money. Many Latin American countries are in the same situation, starting with my country, Venezuela. The violence is terrible, I hope they do something that actually works. That’s very good. I hope they do the same in Venezuela to decrease corruption in prisons a bit. May God protect us from all the consequences that are to come and may good prevail over evil. We want to live in peace and harmony. We must return to the way of God. I’m very glad to know that serious measures are being taken, such as eliminating the use of cellphones in the prisons of any country. CONGRATULATIONS! IVAN ESPINA, CARACAS, VENEZUELA. Lie!!!!I am Honduran and I live in Honduras and this is a total lie. The extortion levels have not been reduced and impunity is increasing every day. What is true, is that the government expends millions and millions of dollars in advertising saying that crime rates in Honduras are decreasing. So while the government is reducing the healthcare budget by making the hospitals seem like rural health clinics and while the government is attacking corruption but can’t explain where the 7 billion lempiras ($300 million) that disappear in the Honduran Institute of Social Security and the 14 billion ($600 million) that were lost in the National Institute of Pensions, for which there is no one behind bars for these crimes!!!And while all this is happening, Honduras are living the daily terror of going to work without knowing if we’ll make it back home and the nationalist government brags with these lies and Honduras die of worms in hospitals because they don’t even have painkillers for patients because the doctors and politicians have stolen all the drugs to sell them. We Honduras pray not to ran into a cop because it will rob us, extort us or if the cop wants to, kills us without no one saying anything. It’s outrageous for Honduras having to read these type of fake news!There’s no reduction here of anything! The only thing being reduced is access to public services!!!! Good afternoon! This example should be suggested to the world to prevent so many social evils that are being planned from the confinement centers. Specially in Venezuela. Thanks. A job well done by the police authorities along with the government. What’s happening in Honduras is coming soon. Hi, I’d like to do my military service. I just turned 18 this month and I completed up to the second level. I want you to recruit me. 😉 I wish they did the same thing in Venezuela. Congratulations, Honduras. This system was also applied in Paraguay, but later, the same penitentiary authorities damaged the device in order to unblock the communication. This is because there’s a lot of corruption in the penitentiary and everywhere else. Here, the authorities can be bought off like baked goods. I feel sorry for what’s happening. Greetings, I think this military accomplishment is wonderful. This government’s deal is all pure shock while patients in hospitals are dying. There are no medicines and there are still ignorant people who haven’t opened their eyes. We have to change this system. That’s good because here in Guatemala we’re not doing a good job controlling cellphones in prisons. That the governments gives an order to kill all the extortionists and those who murder innocent people and to instruct this mission to the P.M. because cops can be bought. É muito bom IT SHOULD BE LIKE THIS IN ALL THOSE CENTERS. I like it. Well, I think it’s good what they’re doing. I wish it was the same in the rest of the countries, at least in El Salvador where the prisons are filled with gangs. It’d be more effective for people. If what they’re saying was really true, then congratulations to the Honduran people who have suffered so much by being prisoners in their own homes. But in order to eliminate all the crimes in Honduras you need to start cleaning all the corrupted people within the judicial, military and police power and the government….of Nicaragua. Good morning to all. I just want to tell you this morning that the members of the military police are doing a good job and I want to congratulate them for their work.Thanks. A dramatic drop in extortions Restoring public safety By Dialogo May 30, 2014 The number of reported extortions throughout the country has dropped by 50 to 70 percent since authorities blocked cell phone service at prisons. Before authorities blocked cell phone calls from prison, Honduran residents reported an average of 10 extortions a day. Since security forces blocked cell phone service at prisons, the National Anti-Extortion Force (FNA) has received three to five reports of extortions daily. Blocking cell phone calls from prisons has had a dramatic impact on the number of extortions because most extortions – 80 percent – are ordered by incarcerated gang members, La Prensa reported. Before cell phone service at prisons was blocked, most extortions were ordered by gang members incarcerated at the prison in San Pedro Sula, according to the newspaper. Many of the extortions are committed by the two major gangs in El Salvador: Mara Salvatrucha, or MS-13, and Barrio 18. The two gangs engage in extortion and other criminal activities, such as drug trafficking, micro-trafficking, robbery, and homicide, said Migdonia Ayestas, Director of the Violence Observatory at the National Autonomous University of Honduras (UNAHH). Gang members often target workers in the transportation industry for extortion, forcing taxi and bus drivers and taxi dispatchers to pay a “war tax,” Ayestas said. About 350 transportation workers in Honduras have been killed in recent years, according to La Prensa. About 80 percent of those killings were linked to extortion. Transportation workers in San Pedro Sula, the country’s industrial center, pay an estimated $27 million (USD) in extortion annually to gangs. There are about 36,000 gang members in Honduras, according to studies by the Jose Simeon Cañas Central American University (UCA). Most of the gang members are between ages 11 and 18, and many of them operate in San Pedro Sula. Gangs are responsible for much of the violence which placed San Pedro Sula at the top of the Citizen Council for Public Security and Criminal Justice’s list of the 50 most violent cities in the world. The council is a community group based in Mexico. last_img read more

CUNA to Congress: No CFPB arbitration rule without new study

first_img 6SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) failed to adequately study the use of arbitration clauses before issuing a proposal that could restrict their use and federal lawmakers should block the bureau from finalizing its plan in the absence of such a study.That is a key point made by CUNA and partners–representing businesses of all sizes and sectors of the economy–in a Dec. 1 letter to member of the U.S. Senate and House committees on appropriations.The Dodd-Frank Act required the CFPB to study arbitration clauses in consumer financial contracts prior to regulating these clauses to determine if new rules were even justified by the study’s findings. While the CFPB executed such a study, the joint letter says that study failed to address important questions.The joint letter strongly supports an existing amendment to the omnibus federal government appropriations bill. It would require the CFPB go back and conduct a new, fair and comprehensive study before adopting its rule that would “open the door widely to abusive class actions that benefit lawyers and harm consumers.” continue reading »last_img read more

Recognize, reward and engage your multi-generational workforce

first_img 21SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr I was at the Genius Bar the other day soaking up the smarts and getting an introduction to the benefits of backing up data before updating to a new OS. As is so often the case at the Apple store, I found myself working with people from several generations. They seemed to be collaborating with relative harmony and purpose to ensure my data wasn’t lost forever, they seemed for the most part happy, and they seemed engaged in their jobs – from the store concierge (no, not a greeter, and not a Baby Boomer either) to the flight deck controller at the Genius Bar, to the Genius. Many leaders and HR pros are struggling to find a way to make multi-generational workforces mesh and be productive. The chatter is all about the changing workforce and managing generational “differences” or as I prefer to say “nuances”. We talk a lot about how each group has specific needs – Traditionalists, Boomers, Gen X, and Millennials. We talk about how generational differences often seem to polarize the workplace, and what to do about it. It’s sad to say, but I don’t see the same patterns in many corporate settings.When will we finally be ready to walk the walk (less talk, more action already) about bringing people together? Where does being an authentic leader fit into this equation? Will focusing on data and generational differences truly help our current employee engagement crisis? Why are we still asking these questions? continue reading »last_img read more

Improved banking performance provides opportunity to protect against downturn

first_img 7SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr According to a study from EY, investments in technology and innovation will have the potential to increase efficiency, manage evolving risks and meet consumer expectations that are required for sustainable success. Banks and credit unions are working hard to become more digitally mature, transitioning from regulatory and transaction-driven organizations to innovation-led firms that will be in a better position to withstand future marketplace challenges.But the most successful organizations will not move forward alone. “Banks must do less themselves and make extensive use of an ecosystem of industry utilities and a diverse range of partners to support investment, deliver better services, drive out costs, manage risks and protect their organizations,” states the report.Other highlights from the report include:59% of banks surveyed anticipate that their technology investment budgets will rise by more than 10% in 2018.For banks that are beginning to invest or increasing their investment in new technologies, 44% plan to purchase the technology from a third party, while only 17% plan to acquire an entity to onboard the technology. continue reading »last_img read more

3 advanced Google SEO strategies for financial marketers

first_imgFinancial institutions face a unique challenge when it comes to web content. As consumers increasingly shop for financial products online — 40% by 2020, according to projections from McKinsey — their path to purchase relies heavily on search. Financial marketers who excel in search engine optimization (SEO) will win the day.Effective SEO requires compelling content — the kind that engages readers and search engines notice. But today’s traditional approach to content-creation often focuses more on optimization and less on consumer engagement. Without adequately mapping consumer intent to the content topics your institution is serving up, you’ll struggle to achieve the kind of search results that can really boost results… and your institution’s bottom line.A change in perspective will help. To really make your marketing strategy hum (beyond just SEO), you need people with a different mindset. Deriving actionable insights and optimizing your approach takes a curious mind and a unique ability to process information using data analytics. continue reading » 1SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Credit union leaders – open your eyes

first_img 81SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Scott Butterfield Scott is the Principal of Your Credit Union Partner, PLLC.Your Credit Union Partner (YCUP) is a trusted advisor to the leaders of more than 100 credit unions located throughout … Web: Details The 2020 CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) is in the books and for me, it was by far the best in recent memory. The presenters are always high caliber. The National Credit Union Foundation’s Herb Wegner Awards are inspiring and a reminder of what makes credit unions different, and this year didn’t disappoint.Upon further reflection, several things make the GAC a standout experience for me personally. First, seeing the continued strong emphasis on credit union values and diverse inclusion initiatives. This year, attendance at the CDFI Roundtable, Juntos Avanzamos, NLCUP, AACUC and GWLN events were at capacity and the energy has never felt stronger! The topics of inclusion, empowerment, and equity in how we approach serving our diverse communities were front and center, and a real differentiator in the overall experience. It’s these things that make credit unions different and better.CUNA’s national “Open Your Eyes to a Credit Union” initiative is timely and exciting. As we support this strategy directly or indirectly as collective credit unions and system partners, let’s first remember to make sure our own eyes are open to what’s at stake.What do you see?On Feb. 19, 2020, a remarkable event occurred among U.S. financial cooperatives (that many of us missed) and that could be leveraged to promote the credit union brand and help consumers open their eyes to credit unions: former President Bill Clinton visited Cooperativa La Sagrada Familia (a credit union) in rural Corozal, Puerto Rico.President Clinton, representing the Clinton Global Initiative Action Network on Post-Disaster Recovery recognized the collective efforts of credit unions to support marginalized communities. Credit unions such as Sagrada Familia, are on the ground and in the trenches, working to rebuild communities after Hurricane María through access to resources that strengthen and amplify their community development work. Read more here.Many organizations, including Inclusiv, NCUF’s CUAid, CUNA Mutual Group, WOCCU, the CDFI Treasury, the NYCUA, other leagues, and many mainland credit union partners have been working with the credit union leaders in Puerto Rico to help them expand capacity to increase financial inclusion and outreach efforts within their underserved communities. An enormous amount of good is coming out of these collaborations and credit union heroes are taking cooperative leadership to new heights. The effort expended on Puerto Rican credit unions was great enough to earn a visit from a former U.S. president. President Clinton’s sole purpose was to formally recognize the work of local credit union leaders, and the broader efforts contributed by credit union leaders outside of Puerto Rico.If I had the power to present a national award to my very own credit union hero of the year, it would go to Pablo DeFilippi (CUDE), SVP at Inclusiv. Like anything Pablo commits to, he throws all of his passion and effort into working for underserved communities. His efforts make a huge difference. To me, Pablo DeFilippi is the Roy Bergengren or Louise Herring of our day. His work with Juntos Avanzamos and Puerto Rican credit unions are recent examples. If you’re looking to learn from an inspiring credit union leader, a leader that gets his hands dirty in the work of inclusion, follow Pablo.Other than the press release by Inclusiv, I haven’t seen this incredible story anywhere else. I could be wrong, but I think if a former U.S. President would have visited a credit union on the mainland, it would have been front-page news and top of mind for most of us.And one more opportunity to open our eyesAs we collectively find powerful stories to help open consumers’ eyes to credit unions, let’s be sure to remember ALL our credit unions. Yes, this means especially our small credit unions. If you follow me, you know this is an area I am extremely passionate about. I believe too many credit union leaders are overlooking or altogether dismissing small credit unions. This creates tension between large and small credit unions and it’s one way bankers attack, seeking to drive a wedge between us. We need to remember, that in the big, competitive financial services space, all but a handful of credit unions are considered smaller players. Collectively, we only have 7 percent of the total market. If you’re dissin’ small credit unions, please stop.Big credit unions need small credit unions and vice versa. Let’s remember this: the credit union movement should be inclusive of ALL credit unions, regardless of asset size. The word “ally” is an oft-repeated and important word when discussing inclusion. A great example of being an ally is seen with the tiny $11.6 -million Greater Kinston Credit Union and its partnership, with the $43-billion State Employees Credit Union. SECU provides leadership and various levels of support to Greater Kinston to assist them in increasing financial inclusion in a severely marginalized community. Working together, they are changing people’s lives and improving the community. There are opportunities like this throughout credit union land. I hope we can do more.Why it mattersWe are better together.We serve in a historic, social movement. An inclusive place where people are more important than profit, members’ stories are as important as their credit scores, character is more important than status, and service means more than a click. Lives materially change when we are at our inclusive best.last_img read more

Glasshouse blooms

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PenSam criticises government’s proposed changes to pension system

first_imgPenSam members can compensate for this interplay between state pension and private pensions by paying into an old-age savings scheme (aldersopsparing), he said, but he added that this was not an ideal solution because it made it harder for individuals to get an overview of their pension.The government, in its recently launched 2025 plan, partially tackled the problem of offsetting within the pension system, but its solution will lead to yet another layer of complexity, Fels said.“We would rather they went the other way and simplified the system by putting the same tax deduction in place for all, corresponding to the deduction for top-rate taxpayers,” he said.Fels argued that everyone would then have a clear incentive to save for their pension, regardless of age and income.However, because the government is “unlikely to change its mind” on this, Fels said PenSam had some proposals to change the 2025 plan based on concrete examples from its own customers.It proposed that the new special pension scheme named in the plan – which is called an age-related savings annuity (aldersopsparingslivrente) and will not be offset against social benefits – be made available for people with not just five years or fewer until state pension age but also for those with up to 15 years to go, or even for the whole of one’s working life.The new scheme should also target those with relatively low incomes by reducing the ceiling on annuity contributions to DKK30,000, for example, PenSam said.It said the opportunity to use this scheme should not be conditional on an individual’s receiving no payments from tax-deductible pension schemes because, in practice, this would prevent people from making use of a partial pension. The new chief executive of Danish labour-market pension fund PenSam has spoken out about aspects of the government’s planned changes to the pension system, calling on lawmakers to ensure it is worthwhile for the lower-paid to save for a private pension.Torsten Fels, who took over as the DKK108bn (€14.5bn) pension fund’s chief executive in August from long-standing leader Helen Kobæk, said: “It is important for all parties that the system be simplified but in such a way that it can function on a stable basis for many years.”He cited a number of drawbacks for PenSam members in Denmark’s current system.“Because of their relatively low incomes, their savings are correspondingly small, and, on top of this, so much of their income is offset against their state pension (folkepension) that, in many cases, it hardly pays off for them to save up,” Fels said.last_img read more

Alwin Bully stages play in December

first_img Share Tweet EntertainmentLocalNews Alwin Bully stages play in December by: – November 30, 2011 Share Alwin Bully. Photo by Celia Sorhaindo. Image source: FlickrAfter a hiatus of two years, Dr. Alwin Bully, Artistic Director of the Caribbean Theatre Network (Production Company), will stage the controversial Jamaican play ECSTASY, at the Arawak House of culture on December 9 – 11, 2011. Written for mature audiences by acclaimed Jamaican playwright, David Heron, ECSTASY explores the sensitive issues of class, colour and sex as people try to find their place in a Caribbean society whose value systems are often based on family background, home address, workplace and what car they drive. The play makes those points excitingly clear by clashing the vibrant and popular Dancehall ghetto culture against the power and prejudices of Jamaica’s uptown sector with its set ways, unwritten rules and clear behavioural expectations. So when Jewel Brown, a sexy and ambitious Dance Hall Queen from the under-belly of one of Kingston’s meanest ghettos meets Richard Foster, an over-protected rich boy in search of himself, the situation is certain to explode, making ECSTASY one of the most entertaining and audience-pleasing plays to hit the Caribbean theatre scene in many years.This Dominican production stars world class singer and entertainer Daryl Bobb who was last seen on stage in August Wilson’s “FENCES”, popular calypsonian Marja ‘Lady Star’ Jeffers, top ranking Radio personality and Entertainment Manager Miguel Labadie, Courts dynamic Marketing Manager Letricia Cadette, and thrilling new-comers Justina Worrell and Leona John.Stage Management is by Gloria Augustus and Curtis Clarendon while set design is by Alwin Bully, Props by Sonia Riviere and Costume coordination by Claudia Henderson. Tickets go on sale Wednesday November 30th.Press Releasecenter_img Sharing is caring! 140 Views   no discussions Sharelast_img read more