Criminal Actors

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

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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…

Ñeembucú, Paraguay

COCAINE / 25 FEB 2021

Despite boasting one of Paraguay’s lowest murder rates, Ñeembucú is an important transit point for marijuana heading to Argentina.

Canindeyú, Paraguay

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 25 FEB 2021

Located on Paraguay’s border with Brazil, Canindeyú is a key criminal hub in the tri-border area.

Boquerón, Paraguay

COCAINE / 25 FEB 2021

Boquerón is an important part of regional cocaine trafficking routes due to its strategic location on Paraguay's border with Bolivia…

Alto Paraná, Paraguay

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 25 FEB 2021

Alto Paraná is home to some of Paraguay’s most dynamic criminal economies. Contraband goods continue to flood Brazil and Argentina…

Latest

How the MS13 Became Lords of the Trash Dump in Honduras

HONDURAS / 19 JAN 2022

Where Honduras ends, there are no borders, no guards, no gate post. This is where a nation vanishes with no fanfare.

Colombia's ‘King’ of Drug Subs Goes Down But Vessels Proliferate

COCAINE / 18 JAN 2022

Authorities in Colombia have netted the country's "king" of drug submarines – a man whose services, prosecutors allege, have been employed by a range of powerful criminal groups from Colombia to…

With US Policy, Mexico Crime Groups See Double the Opportunity in Northbound Migrants

HUMAN RIGHTS / 17 JAN 2022

Reported kidnappings have decreased significantly in Mexico, but in recent years, at least one out of every 10 kidnapping victims has been a migrant trying to reach the United States,…

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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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