Who is Ecuador’s most dangerous criminal ‘Fito’, whose escape caused an explosion of violence in the entire country?

The country is experiencing moments of great tension due to car explosions in various cities, attacks with explosives, kidnapping of police officers and detention of penal agents in prisons.

An armed group attacked a television channel during a live broadcast this Tuesday, leading President Daniel Ngoboa to declare an “internal armed conflict” in the country and order the armed forces to take action against organized crime.

Following “Fito’s” escape, Noboa ordered a state of emergency for 60 days throughout the country, including its prisons, with a nightly curfew on Monday.

However, it was only after “Fito” fled that the situation in the country began to deteriorate. But who is this boss that some consider the most feared in all of Ecuador?

He took command of the Los Choneros gang from prison

Macías, originally from the city of San Pablo de Manta, Ecuador, has been the head of the Los Choneros gang, one of the most dangerous and widespread criminal organizations since the death of Jorge Luis Zambrano, known as the ‘Rasquinas’. also know as. , in December 2020.

Los Choneros, a group formed in Manabí province, is believed to have ties to the Sinaloa Cartel and is involved in bloody confrontations with rival gangs and regularly supporting drug trafficking, hitman, extortion and robbery activities. Known for.

44 year old Fito took command of the gang while in jail., He had been held in a medium security prison called Penitentiaria Litoral in Guayaquil since 2011, where he was serving a 34-year sentence for organized crime, drug trafficking and murder crimes.

Authorities took notice of the dangerous criminal’s escape when he was to be transferred from the regular security prison to the maximum security prison where he was housed.

Despite a search operation being launched inside the jail with over 3,000 personnel, “Fito” was not found and his whereabouts are currently unknown.

This is not the first time that Macias has escaped the security of an Ecuadorian prison. In 2013, he escaped for a few months along with 17 prisoners from the maximum security prison called “La Roca”, where he had been held since 2011 and where he was due to be transferred on Sunday morning.

He has had 14 judicial proceedings, resulting in a total of 34 years in prison, the maximum allowed by law in Ecuador.

Fragile security situation in Ecuador

The state of emergency was declared on the same day that the Prosecutor’s Office prosecuted two prison guards allegedly involved in the escape of “Fito”, a case that drew criticism from the Ecuadorian government for its lack of control and general insecurity over the prison system. Was criticized. in country.

Noboa said in a brief message on the social network Instagram that he was not going to “negotiate with terrorists” and that he would not rest “until peace is returned to all Ecuadorians.”

The President stressed that there was a time when people convicted of drug trafficking and organized crime “used to dictate to the government in power what to do, what we are seeing in the country’s prisons is the result of confronting them. “

Noboa assured that the government “has taken action to regain control over the independence centers lost in recent years” and, in response, “narcoterrorist” groups intend to intimidate us and assume that we will accede to their demands. . ,

The President said he has ordered the police and armed forces to intervene in the control of prisons with the support of the state of emergency so that “they have all the political and legal support for their actions” and called on citizens to support them.

However, Noboa did not mention “Fito’s” alleged escape. In fact, although his absence from prison was confirmed, no government authority has referred to Macias’ disappearance as an “escape.”

Ecuador closes 2023 with a new homicide record for the third year in a row, reaching approximately 7,600 violent deaths. The figure was 4,600 in 2022 and slightly more than 2,100 in 2021.

With information from the Associated Press,

With a tank and heavy weapons: this is how they took over Ecuador’s largest and most violent prison

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