The Guatemalan National Civil Police and Migration Institution train their staff on detection of fraudulent documents and identification of vulnerable migrants

6 July, 2018

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) of the United Nations System, working with the General Directorate for Migration (DGM), provided training on migration-related crimes, detecting fraudulent documents, and recognizing the profiles of vulnerable migrants in Guatemala. The purpose was to strengthen the skills of officials in the General Directorate for Migration and the Civil National Police at strategic sections of the border and at central airports.

The training was carried out in two phases, one online through IOM's  Learning Platform on Migration and the other in person, in order to further strengthen and solidify these skills in the DGM and Police personnel.

The government of Panama contributed to the development of this workshop through the participation of Florentino Jean François, an instructor in fraudulent documentation and migration controls, of Panama's Migration Academy. For Guatemala's part, Alexander Colop, District Attorney of the Public Ministry, and Danissa Ramirez, of the Secretariat against Sexual Violence, Exploitation, and Human Trafficking, facilitated sessions.

In this workshop, the participants had the opportunity to deepen their knowledge about detecting fraudulent documents and interview techniques for avoiding migration-related crimes. They familiarized themselves with the applicable national regulations for migration-related crimes and how to detect and refer vulnerable migrants.

The participants expressed this type of training is important because it keeps them updated on new methods of falsification, since smuggling networks constantly use new means of evading migration controls for different ends.

"This workshop is particularly important now as our countries attempt to implement new security measures for the rapid detection of document fraud, committed by the alteration and falsification of identity and travel documents. It becomes necessary to strengthen the knowledge of our personnel, and workshops like this one facilitate the exchange of information between participants on the types of documents that are detected," stated José Didacio Pittí Sánchez, Ambassador of Panama to Guatemala.

The workshop was co-organized by the mentioned government agencies, and IOM Guatemala through the Regional Mesoamerica Program, which is funded by the Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration of the Department of State of the United States of America.