On Sunday, October 8, 2023, 31 AK-103 rifles of the Armed Forces went missing from the “Rearmirante Renato Belluche” Marine Infantry Battalion (BIM 842) at the Punto Fijo Naval Base. In that case, 13 soldiers were charged and are being tried in the military criminal justice system. Later, an investigation by the Directorate General of Military Counterintelligence (DGCIM) revealed that Lieutenant Commander Johanna García Chávez was the person who helped a group of civilians take rifles. Nevertheless, the 13 soldiers initially detained are standing trial without any evidence linking them to a serious crime.
Sebastiana Barrez || infobae
The head of that brigade, Rear Admiral Augusto Che García Ferrer, was replaced by Rear Admiral José Rafael Morales Chirinos on January 19, 2024; Rear Admiral Uldren Alberto Gedde Díaz also left the “Juan Crisostomo Falcón” Naval Base, handing over the post to Rear Admiral Owaski Elías Moreno Fuenmayor.
The theft of the weapons was possible because the weapons park had no security system, lighting, alarms or sensors, an official from that military unit told Infobae. This, combined with the fact that at the “Juan Crisostomo Falcon” Naval Base, where operates the “Rearmirante Renato Belluche” Infantry Battalion, attached to the 4th Brigade of Amphibious Marine Infantry, “Almirante Alejandro Petion”, there There is a wall that communicates with the sea “and it had fallen without repair.”
Two days passed and no one discovered the rifles were missing. At 2 am on October 11, a sentry notices that there are strange people inside the bunker where weapons are kept. “Protocols have been activated and the brigade chief is aware of what is happening.”
“The most difficult thing for the sentries and officers of that and other battalions was how to confront the entrants if they could use rifles, while they only had low caliber weapons. One of the officers shoots into the air to try to elicit a reaction from the intruders and indeed the people run out of the bunker, without taking anything with them. “The only thing we could do was to thwart the fact that they could have weapons.”
it was already stolen
The list later confirmed the disappearance of 31 rifles taken two days earlier. Of the 31 rifles, three were seen floating in the sea and one in the bushes. The captured officers were not on duty when the weapons were stolen on 8 October, but on 11 October when a small group returned to collect more weapons. Lieutenant Commander García Chávez said in his statement that the weapons were taken on October 8.
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