Criminal Actors

Histories and profiles of organized crime groups, insurgencies, street gangs, vigilantes and the criminal actors that lead them.

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The Capture of Otoniel

27 OCT 2021

Otoniel was the most wanted drug trafficker in Colombia, with a $5 million bounty on his head. InSight Crime explores…

Pachenca

COLOMBIA / OCTOBER 20, 2021

The Pachenca, also known as the Conquering Self Defense Forces of the Sierra, emerged after paramilitary blocsThe Pachenca, also known…

Ariel Máximo Cantero, alias 'Guille'

Ariel Máximo Cantero, alias “Guille,” is the leader of Los Monos, a family clan and drug gang based in Rosario,…

Pablo Escobar

AUC / 30 AUG 2021

Pablo Emilio Escobar Gaviria was the pioneer in industrial-scale cocaine trafficking.

Jimmy Chérizier, alias 'Barbecue'

CARIBBEAN / OCTOBER 21, 2021

Former police officer Jimmy Chérizier, alias "Barbecue," is one of Haiti’s most prolific gang leaders.

Bala na Cara

BRAZIL / 27 JUL 2021

Bala na Cara (BNC) is a prominent criminal group in Brazil's southern state of Rio Grande do Sul.

Border Command

COLOMBIA / 8 JUL 2021

Los Comandos de la Frontera, or the Border Command, formerly known as La Mafia, is a group made up of…

G9 and Family

The “G9 and family and allies” (“G9 en fanmi e alyi” – G9) is a criminal federation of nine of…

César Emilio Peralta, alias ‘El Abusador’

COCAINE / 29 JUN 2021

César Emilio Peralta, alias “El Abusador,” is one of the Dominican Republic's most notorious drug traffickers.

Eliecer Erlinto Chamorro, alias 'Antonio Garcia'

ANTONIO GARCÍA / JUNE 24, 2021

Eliecer Erlinto Chamorro, alias "Antonio Garcia," is the number two commander in Colombia’s National Liberation Army…

Loophole Spurs Large-Scale Land Grabs in Brazil

BRAZIL / 4 JUN 2021

A government registry in Brazil has been used to designate millions of hectares of Amazon forest as rural lands, in…

Los Lagartos

ECUADOR / 1 JUN 2021

Integrated by multiple gangs with shared allies and enemies, Los Lagartos is one of Ecuador’s prolific prison gangs, whose rivalry…

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Synthetic Drugs Flood California Crossing of US-Mexico Border

FENTANYL / 26 NOV 2021

A record seizure of methamphetamine and fentanyl at a US-Mexico border crossing near San Diego underscores how this corner has become a major smuggling corridor for synthetic drugs.

Five Years into Colombia Peace Process, Ex-FARC Fighters Continue to Flee

COLOMBIA / 26 NOV 2021

Alerts of the mass displacement of ex-combatants in Meta, due to the deteriorating security situation in the department, warn of the ongoing challenges that persist in Colombia five years after…

In Contested Zulia and Táchira, Violence Mars Venezuelan Elections

COLECTIVOS / 25 NOV 2021

Under the view of international observers, elections in Venezuela this weekend showed low levels of interference by armed groups or organized crime.

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A country-by-country breakdown of the news as well as key criminal groups and players across Latin America and the Caribbean.

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