MS13

The Mara Salvatrucha, or MS13, is perhaps the most notorious street gang in the Western Hemisphere. While it has its origins in the poor, refugee-laden neighborhoods of 1980s Los Angeles, the gang's reach now extends from Central American nations like El Salvador and through Mexico, the United States and Canada…

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Latest News

BARRIO 18 / 16 MAY 2022

As part of his sweeping gang crackdown, El Salvador President Nayib Bukele has overseen the mass imprisonment of tens of…

EL SALVADOR / 28 APR 2022

Gang members' romantic partners are often also their victims, subordinate to the whims of their companions. MS13 members have been…

EL SALVADOR / 28 APR 2022

The notorious MS13 street gang boasts a diverse criminal portfolio – including prostitution. Through violence, abuse and intimidation, the gang…

BARRIO 18 / 12 APR 2022

With a near unprecedented wave of arrests, the El Salvador government is doubling down and expanding on heavy-handed security policies,…

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Key Actors

Moris Alexander Bercián Manchón, alias 'El Barney'

EL SALVADOR / MARCH 9, 2020

Moris Alexander Bercián Manchón, alias "El Barney," is one of six MS13 members in El Salvador sanctioned by the United States for participation in illicit transnational actvities including drug trafficking.

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About InSight Crime

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Venezuela Drug Trafficking Investigation and InDepth Gender Coverage

29 APR 2022

On May 4, InSight Crime will be publishing The Cocaine Revolution in Venezuela, a groundbreaking investigation into how the Venezuelan government regulates the cocaine trade in the country. An accompanying event,…

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InDepth Coverage of Juan Orlando Hernández

22 APR 2022

Ever since Juan Orlando Hernández was elected president of Honduras in 2014, InSight Crime has provided coverage of every twist and turn during his rollercoaster time in office, amid growing…

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Venezuela's Cocaine Revolution

15 APR 2022

On May 4th, InSight Crime will publish a groundbreaking investigation on drug trafficking in Venezuela. A product of three years of field research across the country, the study uncovers cocaine production in…

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Widespread Coverage of InSight Crime MS13 Investigation

8 APR 2022

In a joint investigation with La Prensa Gráfica, InSight Crime recently revealed that four of the MS13’s foremost leaders had been quietly released from…

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Informing US State Department and European Union

1 APR 2022

InSight Crime Co-director McDermott briefed the US State Department and other international players on the presence of Colombian guerrillas in Venezuela and the implication this has for both nations.  McDermott…

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