The Rise of the PCC: Expansion in Brazil and Beyond

BRAZIL / 18 DEC 2020

Based on 18 months of field work in Brazil and Paraguay, this investigation explores the First Capital Command (Primeiro Comando da Capital – PCC), the hemisphere’s premier prison gang and one of the largest in the Americas.

The PCC is a unique organization. It is headquartered in Brazil’s and increasingly Paraguay’s penitentiary systems, but it has satellite organizations throughout the region, who are trafficking drugs on a local and an international level.

This series was done in conjunction with American University’s Center for Latin American and Latino Studies.

Chapter 1

PCC Investigation: Introduction and Major Findings

BRAZIL / 11 DEC 2020

It was August 31, 1993, and the sun was shining when eight men entered a makeshift soccer pitch in the middle of the Taubaté prison.

Chapter 2

PCC: A Prison from Which There Is No Escape

BRAZIL / 14 DEC 2020

It was a Tuesday night, January 14, 2020, after “free time” when prison authorities found his body.

Chapter 3

How PCC ‘Discipline’ Helped Gang Control the Underworld

BRAZIL / 15 DEC 2020

On November 14, 2016, about 12 p.m., Carlos Magno de Souza was driving along the asphalt streets of Peruíbe, São Paulo, past the single-story houses that dot the seaside city…

Chapter 4

Court Case Paints Picture of Disorganization in Brazil’s PCC

BRAZIL / 16 DEC 2020

The PCC is often described as Brazil’s most potent criminal gang, but a recent case against it paints a picture that belies the reputation of the group as a strict,…

Chapter 5

While Taking Paraguay-Brazil Border, PCC Tries to Control Its Own

BRAZIL / 17 DEC 2020

On June 10, 2016, Jorge Rafaat was driving his armored Hummer when he pulled up to a stop light in central Pedro Juan Caballero, a Paraguayan city at the border…

Chapter 6

Intercepts Show How Brazil Police Extort PCC

BRAZIL / 18 DEC 2020

“Plata o Plomo” is an overused phrase to describe the way criminals threaten officials and civilians to ensure compliance with their wishes. In one Brazilian case, it seems more appropriately…

Full Report

Click here to download the full report: The Rise of the PCC: Expansion in Brazil and Beyond

Related Content

BRAZIL / 28 OCT 2011

Brazil's community police program will deploy a new unit to the Rio de Janeiro shantytown closest to the city's sports…

BRAZIL / 19 JUL 2012

A suspected Brazilian gang leader based in one of Paraguay's key locations for smuggling contraband was gunned down while playing…

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 4 MAR 2021

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

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

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,…

THE ORGANIZATION

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…

THE ORGANIZATION

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…

LA ORGANIZACIÓN

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…

THE ORGANIZATION

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…

icon #SupportFreePress
image

Support Our Work

Investigating organized crime is an expensive and often risky enterprise. Reaching primary sources and getting the real story involve extensive fieldwork. Please donate. Every dollar supports our mission.

DONATE NOW image