This article first appeared in Vice News
Photos and investigation by Seth Berry; words by me.
LOCAL PASTOR OMAR GUZMAN convened his nightly vigil on a dirt intersection on a recent evening in Triunfo de la Cruz, a dusty hamlet on Honduras’ windblown Caribbean coast. It was several weeks since the forced disappearance of five black Honduran, or “Garifuna,” men from this community, and local residents have been praying ever since.
Twelve armed men in police uniforms and balaclavas entered the town in the predawn hours of July 19 in unmarked, brand-new pickups, despite a COVID-19 curfew. They abducted the five men at gunpoint. Eyewitnesses reported the assailants wore uniforms of the “DPI,” or the investigative arm of the Honduran National Police, but seemed disorganized and amateur. They forced the men into their trucks and drove off into the night. Nothing has been seen or heard since of either the masked men or their captors.