Criminal Actors

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

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Misiones, Argentina

GEOGRAPHIC PROFILES / 15 MAR 2021

Misiones is the main entry point for marijuana smuggled from Paraguay into Argentina across the Paraná River and one of…

Chaco, Argentina

GEOGRAPHIC PROFILES / 15 MAR 2021

Chaco is a transit corridor for illicit products. Most drugs or contraband smuggled into Argentina in the Formosa province crosses Chaco…

Paraná, Brazil

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 4 MAR 2021

Paraná is a hub for drug trafficking. Vast quantities of cocaine and marijuana enter the state from Paraguay, via the…

Santa Catarina, Brazil

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 4 MAR 2021

Santa Catarina is a launchpad for cocaine destined for Europe and a transit point for marijuana and contraband headed to…

Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 4 MAR 2021

Mato Grosso do Sul is among Brazil’s most strategic states for transnational crime.

Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil

COCAINE / 4 MAR 2021

Strategically located between Argentina and Uruguay, Rio Grande do Sul is a hub for contraband and drug smuggling.

Brazil Profile

BRAZIL / SEPTEMBER 8, 2020

Brazil, Latin America’s largest economy, has seen some important security advances in recent years, taking dozens of communities in Rio…

Guatemala Profile

GUATEMALA / 28 FEB 2021

Guatemala's criminal organizations are among the most sophisticated and dangerous in Central America. Some of them have been in operation…

Choneros

ECUADOR / OCTOBER 4, 2021

Los Choneros is one of Ecuador’s most prominent criminal groups, which first emerged in the late 1990s as a drug…

Alto Paraguay, Paraguay

GEOGRAPHIC PROFILES / 25 FEB 2021

One of Paraguay’s most sparsely populated but most homicidal departments, Alto Paraguay serves as an important cocaine transit corridor.

Concepción, Paraguay

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 25 FEB 2021

In Concepción, powerful drug traffickers have penetrated local politics. With corruption rife, some municipalities have started to resemble criminal enclaves.

Itapúa, Paraguay

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 25 FEB 2021

Itapúa is a minor marijuana producer but an important transit corridor for cannabis smuggled into Argentina. Some areas of the…

Latest

Desperation in the Desert: The Industrialization of Migrant Smuggling on the US-Mexico Border

FEATURED / 5 OCT 2022

Along the US-Mexico border, a booming migrant smuggling industry is closely monitored by organized crime groups.

Military Arsenals Provide Convenient Source of Weapons for Latin American Gangs

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 4 OCT 2022

Corruption, no supervision, and poor legislation have led to Latin American military weapons ending up in criminal hands.

High-Profile Venezuela-US Prisoner Swap Comes at Opportune Moment

ELITES AND CRIME / 4 OCT 2022

A high-profile prisoner swap raises hopes of improving US-Venezuela relations and abilities to tackle 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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