Luis Rodolfo Escobar ceased to be the director of the Guatemalan Penitentiary System, after he was removed from office on the night of December 16.
Authorities of the Ministry of the Interior reported this Friday, December 17, that the director of the Penitentiary System (SP), Luis Rodolfo Escobar, was removed from the position.
In his place, Alejandro Chang, who is deputy director of Social Rehabilitation, will remain on an interim basis.
Escobar arrived at the Penitentiary System on April 1, 2020, when he stressed that the conditions of the prison guards would be improved, but eight months later he is removed from office.
Escobar’s departure follows a scandal in the SP over the escape of Cristian Rodríguez Gallardo, a convict with extradition to the United States, who escaped from Mariscal Zavala prison on November 16.
Rodríguez Gallardo was facing an extradition process to the United States for money laundering crimes, after the Third Court ordered his shipment to that country to face the accusations.
Rodríguez Gallardo, 46, alias el Patojo, had been captured on September 20, 2020 during an operation at kilometer 6.5 of the route to the Atlantic.
Also read: Escape from Mariscal Zavala Cristian Rodríguez Gallardo, inmate with extradition process to the United States.
He does not know the reason for his dismissal
Luis Rodolfo Escobar, who until yesterday was the director of the SP of Guatemala, offered a radio interview to Network, in which he assured that he does not know the reason why he was dismissed.
He acknowledged that he was removed from office on the night of December 16, around 9:30 p.m., and pointed out that the decisions must be respected.
“I do not know what was the reason for the dismissal, but I respect it,” he said.
He pointed out that at the time they spoke about the escape of the prisoner from the Mariscal Zavala prison, but that they did not directly tell him that his dismissal was for that reason.
The former official said that he had resigned from the post and that the authorities chose to remove him.
He asked the population to denounce any information that could give the whereabouts of the person who escaped and asked whoever occupies the position of director of the SP to continue with the projects, with respect for the human rights of those deprived of liberty, because they deserve a second chance.
The security forces detained nine workers from the Penitentiary System on Saturday, December 11, for the escape on November 16 of Cristian Renato Rodríguez Gallardo.
Also read: Nine prison officers arrested, including the prison director and warden, for the escape of an extraditable inmate
Among those arrested is the director of the prison, Óscar Matías Pichiya Pathán, as well as the warden, Óscar Vidal Sanic Samol.
The detainees are accused of “breach of duties, culpable evasion and abuse of authority,” according to the authorities.