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Guatemala

Guatemala’s criminal organizations are among the most sophisticated and dangerous in Central America. Some of them have been in operation for decades. They include former members of the military, intelligence agencies and active members of the police.

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Costa Rica Cocaine Theft Ring Relies on Crooked Agents

NEWS / 13 APR 2021

The dismantling of a Costa Rican drug gang that worked with agents in an elite investigative unit to steal cocaine shipments from rival traffickers is yet another sign of the…

Familial Fiefdom: Ocós, Guatemala and the Preciado Navarijo Legacy

NEWS / 12 MAR 2021

The extradition of a mayor threatens to topple his family’s decades-long political control of a coastal Pacific town -- a region where local officials have a history of drug trafficking.

Battle for Guatemala’s Top Courts Intensifies

NEWS / 9 MAR 2021

The naming of judges to Guatemala's high courts has turned into an escalating fight between political elites seeking to stack the courts with allies and anti-impunity prosecutors accusing the elites…

Guatemala Profile

Criminal Actors

Armed Groups

Guatemala’s multitude of criminal groups range from violent street gangs to trafficking groups that serve as intermediaries for Colombian and Mexican cartels. The violent MS13 and Barrio 18 gangs both have a foothold in the country, controlling extortion activities in Guatemala City’s urban neighborhoods. Long-time smuggling groups also have operations in the country’s porous border regions. These groups often have links to corrupt officials, ranging from local politicians to high-level security and government officials.

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News

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 for decades. They include former members of the military, intelligence…

COCAINE / 22 FEB 2021

An anti-narcotics operation targeting an alleged trafficking ring in Guatemala has shed light on the increasing importance of small, often discrete transport networks in the country's cocaine trade.

ELITES AND CRIME / 17 FEB 2021

Los Huistas, a Guatemalan drug trafficking group connected to a number of government officials, has continued to build its network of political influence, as recent events have shown.

EL SALVADOR / 15 FEB 2021

Hopes are high in the Northern Triangle, that the arrival of Joseph Biden and his administration to the White House will lead to the creation of a regional commission that…

COCAINE / 4 FEB 2021

Drug trafficking has been reconfigured in Guatemala. The large clans that traditionally dominated the business have broken up.

ARGENTINA / 29 JAN 2021

While unrest gripped much of Latin America in 2019, it was the coronavirus that took center stage and ripped through the region in 2020, upending everything from commercial trade to…

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