Galapagos Governing Council asked Minister Gabriel Martínez to replace police personnel in the face of recent events on the islands

185 turtles were found wrapped in plastic in luggage at the Baltra airport. Photo: Courtesy

The disappearance of a small plane in a chain of custody and the attempted transfer of 185 turtles motivated the request.

Updated on
March 29, 2021

The disappearance of a chain-of-custody plane on Isabela Island and the discovery of an illegal shipment of 185 turtles at Baltra airport were the reasons why the president of the Galapagos Governing Council, Norman Wray, requested the Minister of Government, Gabriel Martínez, to replace the uniformed officers on the islands.

In a letter, Wray points out that in both aforementioned events, active members of the Police are involved, in total six (five in the case of the small plane and one in the confiscation of turtles), so he requested that a security committee be convened and carried out to “restore the security of the province, strengthen the police institution, consider the replacement of bad police elements and the activation of a security strategy against activities such as drug trafficking and trafficking in species.”

In addition, he requests sending specialized police personnel to the islands to control criminal actions.

On March 22, an investigation was initiated into the disappearance of the Cessna Conquest II type plane that landed at the Isabela Island airport on January 8 of this year, [landing] without the authorization of officials and with apparently cloned license plates. As a result [of the subsequent disappearance of the plane], precautionary measures were issued for five uniformed personnel.

Meanwhile, on Monday morning, the Attorney General’s Office reported that a police officer will be prosecuted in the coming hours for the alleged crime against wildlife, which is punishable by up to three years in prison. (I)

Read the original coverage from El Universo at

Informing and sharing news on marine life, flora, fauna and conservation in the Galápagos Islands since 2017
© SOS Galápagos, 2021

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