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Chile: The Investigations Police
Country Study > Chapter 5 > National Security > The Security Forces > The Investigations Police

THE INVESTIGATIONS POLICE


The Investigations Police, numbering about 4,000, is a plainclothes civilian agency engaged primarily in the detection and investigation of crime. Headquartered in Santiago, the force has seven substations in other parts of Chile. It functions throughout the country in support of the Carabineros. Operationally, its chain of command runs from the director general through a deputy director to the inspectors in charge of the provincial substations. Functionally, it is divided into a number of departments, including administration, foreign and internal police, health, justice, personnel, and welfare. The force also includes the Air Police Brigade, responsible for airport surveillance; the National Identification Bureau, which keeps records of all adult citizens and foreign residents and issues identification cards that must be carried at all times; and the Forensic Medicine Laboratory. In addition, the Special Units Prefecture comprises six brigades dealing with fraud, murder, robberies, vehicle theft, vice, and women's affairs.

The Investigations Police functions in close collaboration with the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) and with the intelligence services of the army, navy, and air force. During the military government, some Investigations Police agents became involved in criminal activities. By early 1992, its new director, HorĂ¡cio Toro, a retired army general appointed by the Aylwin government, had withdrawn more than 200 officers from duty because of their alleged involvement in drug trafficking.

Data as of March 1994




Last Updated: March 1994


Editor's Note: Country Studies included here were published between 1988 and 1998. The Country study for Chile was first published in 1994. Where available, the data has been updated through 2008. The date at the bottom of each section will indicate the time period of the data. Information on some countries may no longer be up to date. See the "Research Completed" date at the beginning of each study on the Title Page or the "Data as of" date at the end of each section of text. This information is included due to its comprehensiveness and for historical purposes.

Note that current information from the CIA World Factbook, U.S. Department of State Background Notes, Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Country Briefs, the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office's Country Profiles, and the World Bank can be found on Factba.se.

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