Caught in Peru
Lima Travel Blog› entry 1 of 1 › view all entries
A few months ago i was watching a television program about Dutch prisoners caught in foreign countrys.
Every year hundreds of Dutch people are caught in south-America and that fact shocked me because we Dutch people are good and fair people right?
Why so mutch Dutch people are getting caught every year?!
And why ALLWAYS in Curacao,Peru,Ecuador,Panama,Dominican Republic and Suriname?!
I heared the most prisoners are in Peru.
I wanted to know the answer so we took a plane to Peru to get the answer.
It was also for our hollyday but it started with the idea to visit Dutch prisoners.
We landed on monday and on thuesday is visiting day so we met one of our most famous TB-friend Yadi on our first day :D
She recommended us to to pick a taxi to Callao because that's the fastest way to get there.
On tuesday around 9 o'clock in the morning we arrived at the Sarita Colonia prison in Callao.
We drived trough the "slums" of Callao, a harbourcity near Lima, you land when in Callao when you go to Lima.
It's an old big concrete building surrounded by some guards and Peruvian people who want to sell you candy and drinks.
You can hear the inmates scream and yelling when you stand in line.
Some people even want to watch your bag when your not allowed to take your wallet or bag inside.
There was a big row of people so we had to stand in line.
I was not allowed to take pictures so iam realy sorry for that!
There was a guy in the line and he looked like someone from Holland. (I realy can see that!)
So i asked him if he's from Holland but he was a German guy from Dusseldorf, not far from my hometown :)
He told me he wants to visit his brother in the prison, his brother was caught at the airport 2 years ago.. sad story.
After a long conversation and one hour further we entered the main gate.
After giving some chocolate-bars to corrupt policeofficers i was allowed to enter the prison.
Then some officers did'nt trust my Dutch candy: Drop.
They thought it was hasj haha so i give them a few to eat and after chewing a few times they spit it out and told me it was made of shit hahaha!
They gave me 8 stamps on my arm and a coin with a number so the guards would recognise us when we leave and for safety reasons.
After that we walked trough a alley to some concrete bunkers.
When we walked in the first time i felt a bit scared, hundreds of Peru's most dangerous inmates where watching us while we walked trough the prison.
They look at your clothes,your watch,chains,earrings: everything what new and shiny.
I gave a guard with a machine gun my list with names of the 16 Dutch prisoners.
He was the boss and he looked like a small Peruvian Hitler with his moustache and black sunglasses.
He told me one guy commited suicide a week ago so could meet only 15 guys.
We payed him 2 sol and after paying he told us in what building they are.
In the prison some inmates are friends with the guards, they tell what's goint on, who is selling drugs... just snitches but a inmate know who we wanted to vistit so after paying also him 2 sol he walked along with us.
They have 2 buildings: The minima and the maxima.
The guys i've met where sitting in the maxima, the most tough building of the Sarita Colonia.
We entered several giant rusty iron doors and then we arrived at the courtyard..
EVERYWHERE your standing: 20cm in front,behind and on your right/left side are other prisoners talking,doing nothing
It looks and smells like hell on that courtyard, it's like the half of a soccerfield filled with 2000 prisoners.
The temperature was like 35 degreas cause there are so many people in one small place.
At first the Dutch guys looked at us if we where from Mars haha
They thought we also where caught with cocaine.
I told them that we where just guys who wanted to visit them to "chill around" with them haha.
I thought that it where though guys, hard criminals but they where not!
They where just normal guys, some of them could be my grandfather!
I gave them my bag with 20kg of Dutch candys for them and they where so happy!
They where like hamsters, they hided every thing in the blankets,the wall and the foots of their beds haha.
They where sóóó'happy, i can't describe that feeling...
They starting to ask questions about my Dutch soccershirt and they talked sóóóo mutch!!!
They where happy to speak to somebody else then always the same people.
Then my big question came: Why are they sentenced to prison in Peru?!
They told me they all are caught smuggling cocaine, from 8 till 30 kilo's!
They all did it for the fast money, most of them where just dumb, the rest did it for their own use and buisness.
There was one guy (aged 67) and he told me that he had a Peruvian girlfriend who told him she arranged a hollyday for him.
He was very lonely, his wife died a few years ago and then he met his "girlfriend"
He was very happy,worked hard his whole life and he never been to Peru.
She told him that she arranged a nice hotel near the sea with a swimming pool so they both took a flight to Peru and had a great hollyday where they did nice things,relaxed and he met her family.
After 2 weeks of doing nice things and enjoying their hollyday his girlfriend packed their suitecases with cocaine and took a taxi to the airport of Callao.
The poor guy did knew NOTHING about it!
At the douane he and his girlfriend where arrested and caught with 20kg of pure cocaine..
Now 3 years later in the prison of Callao, still got 21 years to survive in this hell....
There was also a guy who told us that he met a Peruvian girl in Amsterdam in a pub, he fell in love with her and after a few days they asked him to visit her and ther family one time in Peru.
So the guy bought a ticket to Lima to visit the family and visit some friends of his girlfriend with a nice hollyday in mind.
He spend a great 3 weeks in Peru and his girlfriend introduced him some of her "best" friends but on the last day his "friends" forced him with a gun to wear a special improvised waistcoat filled with cocaine on his flight back to Amsterdam.
They watched and followed him from his hotel to the airport.
After checked in the douane saw he was sweating and he was very nervous so they took him to a room and after a few minutes they found the cocaine and that's where his life is ruined and stopped... sad but it's the reality most people don't see.
We where the first guys who visited them in 4 years.
They where sentenced to 25 years in this prison without speaking a lawyer or a interprenter!!!!
We had a great talk with the prisoners, they asked me everyting about the soccerclubs and the news!
After a long conversation they showed us the different sections in the prison.
There was one Peruvian guy who was standing everyday, the whole day on the same step in the stairs, he was all drugged up.
The Dutch guy showed me his bed, it looks like the content of a Ikea-box.
Every night he have to build his own bed and when he wake up he have to dissasemble his bed.
He told me he was busy for a hour with his bed every day haha.
One of his cellmates called neighbours, a Peruvian drugdealer asked me if i want a tatoo because he was busy with his own-made tatoomachine made with a rough aids needle, a pen and a little motor from a electric toothbrush hahahaha
While i was watching in the room i suddenly saw 2 beautifull brown legs and red nailvanish so i asked him if there's a female inmate over there.
He laughed and told me that "Jessica" is actualy a guy who sells his ass to the desperate inmates.
The Dutch guy told me that guy is always busy and makes fortunes by selling his ass in the prison hahaha.
We walked trough a long passage, hundreds of Peruvian prisoners where sitting on the floor,observating the wall and observating us: That's their life... very sad.
There was one huge Peruvian guy, cutted and sliced all open with a knife once.
His head,eye,cheeks where all scarred and his chest was also filled with scars!
We think: Thats crazy! but those prisoners think: shit happens cause that happens every day.
You see all kinds of people in the prison: People from Asia,Europe,America and Australia.
Most of them are from Asia then the Dutch guys and the Europeans.
The people from Asia and Africa have the toughest time because they get no help from their ambassy so if they 25 years, you stay 25 years without money or help.
They told me about the hard prison-life, you pay $1500; for a bed, or else you sleep on the "shitholes" (toilets)
At night your unable to go to the "shithole" because that's to dangerous so everybody is doing what they have to do in a bag and bottle at night...
Every morning the lights go on at 6:00 in the morning and at 7:00 the guards open the rusty steel door to the courtyard.
The Guards give every inmate 1 boleta of cocaine to sniff and it will cost them nothing.
After a few hours the inmates want more drugs because the effect of the coke is gone.
And for the second boleta they have to pay money.
So the guards make the inmates addicted to cocaine so they spend the money from the ambassy to their addiction.... very sad.
A Dutch inmate told me he is caught with cocaine, he got his sentence but now he's in prison the guards try to make him addicted!
I didn't believe him untill he walked to a guard to ask him for a boleta and some marijuana for me.
So i was shouting: No i don't want to smoke in this prison i don't trust those corrupted guards!
But it's the reality... and that's hard.
Every day people getting raped under the showers, they have 3 "showers" for 800 people and 2 hours a day water.
Even the water is not hygienic, it's not clear and it smells a bit.
They sleep with 60/70 people in one cell, you don't have privacy, everywhere you see rats,cockroaches.
You have to pay for the food and the water, and the food is realy realy bad: Rotten fishheads with some unknown old vegetables in soup.
If you have money you can buy a plate with chicken and rice for 4 soles. (around $0,75;)
They have one little concrete bunker with a television and wooden chairs and tables called the "living-room"
It's better then nothing.
After we left the prisoners i felt so bad about them, they are no criminals, they just did a stupid thing.
How can you sentence people from 65 and 67 to 25 years in this hell!?
After we came back to the Netherlands i started my own foundation for Dutch prisoners in Peru.
My intention is to visit them one or 2 times a year and give them Dutch candy's,products,a toothbrush,soap,sealed food,lot's of magazines and letters from the children from my mothers class. (my mom is a teacher on a primaryschool)
I give speaches on service-clubs,compagnies and asking other people to collect money to buy all that stuff.
Now you know what i do with my foundation :)
Everytime when i visit a new prison or i have something i want to share with you i write that in this blog =D
If you have ANY commends or questions, just mail,PM,commend them or check my website.