Venezuela vows police `purge` after lawmaker`s murder

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has vowed to conduct a "major purge" of the police force following the brutal murder of a top lawmaker earlier this month. 

AFP| Last Updated: Oct 29, 2014, 11:02 AM IST

Caracas: Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has vowed to conduct a "major purge" of the police force following the brutal murder of a top lawmaker earlier this month. 

Robert Serra, 27, a rising star in the ruling United Socialist Party, was found stabbed to death in his home with his partner Maria Herrera on October 2.

Two people have been arrested following the high-profile murder. 

Maduro said some officers were colluding with "mafias" to carry out crimes, and pledged to clean up Venezuela`s corrupt force. 

"Actions must be taken to correct all that is wrong in the Venezuelan police force, to conduct a major purge," Maduro told reporters late Monday. 

He said he would create a commission tasked with reforming the sector, which he said required a "revolution."

The Venezuelan president was speaking at the inauguration of a new interior minister, Carmen Melendez, who replaces Miguel Rodriguez Torres after he was abruptly sacked last week. 

The new minister is tasked with battling Venezuela`s soaring crime rate, was fired after violent clashes between police and groups loyal to late President Hugo Chavez left five people dead in Caracas. 

Venezuela, one of the world`s most violent countries, has 53 murders per 100,000 people, according to the United Nations. Its homicide rate is second only to Honduras, which has 90 murders per 100,000 people.