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Annual report of the Attorney General to the citizens of Guatemala

#FreshStartMonday

Welcome to #FreshStartMonday!
 
“If it cannot be measured, it cannot be managed.” – Peter Drucker

On May 16, 2022, the Attorney General of Guatemala, María Consuelo Porras, delivered the annual report of the Attorney General's Office (Ministerio Público, hereinafter “the AGO”), presenting the results of her fourth year of work that corresponds to 2021-2022.
 
As established by the Organic Law of the Attorney General's Office[1], Decree Number 40-94, the report is submitted to the public and contains: 1) a summary of the work performed, 2) an analysis of the service provided, 3) a compilation of the instructions issued by the Attorney General, 4) a detail of the execution of the institution's budget and 5) the proposals for improvement needed at the office.
 
The AGO role includes investigating crimes of public action and promoting criminal prosecution before the courts, exercising civil action in the cases established by law, directing the police and other State security forces in the investigation of criminal acts, and preserving the rule of law and respect for human rights[2].
 
the 2021 year, the AGO obtained a contribution from the central government of GTQ.2,094,019,000.00, other revenues of GTQ.25,000,000.00 and a cash and bank reduction of GTQ.553,825,544.00 for a total of GTQ.2,672,844,544.00. This total was subsequently increased by GTQ.105,031,959.73 to reach a total current budget of GTQ.2,777,876,503.73. As reported, the amount executed from April 1 to December 31, 2021, was GTQ.1,934,262,197.00. For year 2022, the AGO requested a contribution of GTQ.4,515,845,890.00 from the Ministry of Public Finance. However, GTQ.3,420,100,000.00 was approved, which included other income and a decrease in cash and banks to reach GTQ.3,569,000,000.00.
 
The following are some of the data highlighted in the report on the service provided by the institution. It is important to consider that the effects caused by the Covid-19 pandemic had a result in the implementation of security measures and operation of the institution.
 
Criminal Cases.

*For each period, it is understood that there are a number of cases for which a resolution from the authorities is pending.
**The metropolitan region registers the highest number of complaints in the current period (99,804).

 

Highest reported crimes (complaints).

*The increase in the number of complaints of violence against women is due to the recent implementation of mechanisms and platforms for reporting.
**Complaints of threats have a high rate of dismissal at the attorney general's office, given that the charges are not ratified after the complaint has been filed.
***The crime of theft has been mainly concentrated in labor and commercial activity, and a large part is related to the theft of mobile terminal equipment (cell phones).

The report also includes an analysis of crimes classified as of "social transcendence", reporting 185 cases of femicide; 13,584 reports of blackmail; 94 reports of abduction or kidnapping; and 549 reports of fraud and illegal customs smuggling.
 
Regarding the dismissal of complaints, the legal mechanism invoked by the AGO that allows a complaint to be rejected or to consider that the facts alleged do not constitute a crime reported a total of 52,524. This, among others, is the result of the institution's strategies to optimize resources.
 
The results show that in the last period the number of complaints resolved through these measures increased from 20,732 to 23,528, with the request of Alternative Dismissal Criteria (Criterio de Oportunidad) being the most used (90%).
 
Regarding the number of sentences obtained, or judicial resolutions that put an end to the criminal process, during the period a total of 7,867 sentences were reported, most of them for the crime of Violence Against Women (1,722), followed by Extortion / Blackmail (729), and Rape (356). The MP also reports a total of 7,396 convictions and 1,523 acquittals, the majority for Violence Against Women, with 1,302 convictions and 351 acquittals. Regarding some crimes of a pecuniary character, 47 convictions and 8 acquittals are reported for theft, 31 convictions and 2 acquittals for special cases of fraud, 21 convictions and 2 acquittals for fraud, and 6 convictions and 8 acquittals for misappropriation.
 
The AGO communicates its activities and broadcasts in real time through different media such as notes published on its institutional website, attention to journalists, and the administration of social networks on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and TikTok as of this year. We encourage our clients to be informed and learn about the activities of public institutions, the performance of their officials, and ensure compliance with the Political Constitution of the Republic of Guatemala.
 

[1] Article 16 Organic Law of the Attorney General's Office

[2] Article 1 and 2 Organic Law of the Attorney General's Office

Emanuel Callejas
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