Sunday, February 6, 2011

Freight Train Robbery Leaves Two Dead

Shoot Out with Police Kills Two Teenagers and Another Seriously Injured
Shipping News Feature

ARGENTINA – For most involved in the logistics industry the closest one comes to criminality is pilfering from a truck load or on a more serious note the hijacking of a shipping container or the smuggling of refugees. In some parts of the world however pirate gangs roam the ocean seeking cargo ships to plunder and ransom. The one freight related crime that it seemed reasonable to assume had pretty much died out would have been train robbery.

 Events this week have highlighted that this sadly is very much not the case. Last week an armed gang operating out of a shanty town in the outskirts of Buenos Aires sabotaged a length of rail track adjacent to José León Suárez causing a freight train to derail. The gang are believed to have deliberately targeted the train knowing it was carrying a cargo of easily disposed of automobile spares.

Citizens living nearby claimed the derailment was the result of a mechanical fault but the Minister of Justice, Security and Human Rights issued a statement to the effect that this was a robbery by a known gang operating from Villa la Cárcova. The result of the robbery was a street battle in which 16 year old Franco Almirón and Mauricio Ramos, 17 were killed and 19 year old Joaquín Romero was hospitalised with extremely serious gunshot wounds.

The railway operating company Nuevo Central Argentino S. A. (NCA), the largest freight carrying rail service in the country, issued a statement saying there have been two similar incidents in the past three months and they were concerned for the welfare and safety of their staff.

When over twenty people were arrested the Police Station was surrounded by protestors demanding their release and as a result of the ensuing actions a police officer is in custody for the alleged killing of one of the youths whilst trying to repress the crowd.

Photo:- Villa la Cárcova near José León Suárez