Sunday, February 11, 2007

Duel with the Devil

Is the name of a fairly sensationalist Canadian documentary about CSI in Guatemala City.

The film-makers' headline statistic is the 15 or so homicides that occur in the chapin capital every 24 hours. On a particularly bad night this can rise to as many as 30, the total for a whole year in Vancouver. (There are approximately 150 murders annually here in London, around a third of which can be tied to organised criminal groups.)

Whilst watching CSI: Miami the other evening I did a little research and found some surprising information. Florida's most famous city was little more than an isolated village on the banks of the Miami river from its foundation in the 1840s until the arrival of the railroad on April 7, 1896. At the turn of the century there were still only 1,167 people living there. This number had increased to 110,637 in 1930 and now stands at 362,470 − still pretty tiny compared to the 2m+ inhabitants of Guatemala City.

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