As South America’s largest nation, Brazil has produced two of the region’s most powerful criminal groups: The First Capital Command (Primeiro Comando da Capital – PCC) and Red Command (Comando Vermelho). Both began as prison gangs but have since transformed themselves into transnational crime organizations involved in cocaine smuggling to Europe, controlling the movement of drugs out of country’s ports. The gangs also continue to be a national threat, with members organized around city strongholds, where they regulate everything from local drug sales and cigarette smuggling to violent bank robberies.
Failing prison systems and entrenched corruption mean mega-prisons holding tens of thousands won't solve insecurity in Latin America.
A lack of regulation surrounding how crypto-currencies are used by organized crime has left Latin America dangerously exposed.
As gold prices have skyrocketed, a boom in mining across the Amazon Basin has flourished, leaving a deep environmental footprint.
Marcelo “Piloto” Pinheiro was considered one of the Brazilian government’s most sought-after drug traffickers until 2017.
Gilberto Aparecido Dos Santos, alias “Fuminho,” is one of the leaders of Brazil’s largest criminal gang, the First Capital Command (Primeiro Comando da Capital – PCC).
Marcos Willians Herbas Camacho, alias "Marcola," has been the top leader of the First Capital Command (Primeiro Comando da Capital - PCC) since 2002.
Bolivia's cocaine trade is on the up. Originally a coca leaf cultivator, Bolivia has moved to cocaine production.
Latin America's environmental and land protectors are routinely murdered by the regions criminals.
Brazil is facing a presidential election that could genuinely reshape its criminal landscape. How do Bolsonaro and Lula compare?…
Synthetic drugs like methamphetamine, fentanyl, and ecstasy are reshaping Latin America's drug trade.
Brazil's border town of Corumbá is a well-known smuggling route from Bolivia. This is unlikely to change soon.
Brazil's largest gang, the PCC, could be trying to take over the marijuana business in neighboring Paraguay.