HomeNewsBriefColombia Gangs Have 5,000 Members: Police
BRIEF

Colombia Gangs Have 5,000 Members: Police

COLOMBIA / 8 JUL 2011 BY RONAN GRAHAM EN

Almost 5,000 people are members of criminal gangs in Colombia, according to a recent police report on gang activity in the country.

According to the report, it is estimated that criminal gangs in Colombia have a combined membership of 4,980 people, a figure almost 700 higher that was estimated in January, in a previous police report into gang activity.

The government has labeled these gangs BACRIM, short for "bandas criminales emergentes," or emerging criminal groups.

Of the close to 5,000 gang members, the police report stated that around half are believed to form part of the core structure of the gangs, and are heavily armed, while the other half play support roles, performing tasks such as transporting drugs and collecting extortion money.

The numbers quoted by the police report seem to run contrary to the claims of Colombian bishop Monsignor Julio Cesar Vidal Ortiz, who recently said that, to his knowledge, around 5,000 members of the BACRIM are interested in demobilizing.

As InSight Crime reported earlier this year, the head of the Colombian National Police, General Oscar Naranjo, has called the BACRIMs the biggest threat to national security in the country.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Tags

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

COLOMBIA / 7 JUN 2011

After six people were massacred in southern Colombia, authorities said the killing could be a sign of trouble brewing within…

COLOMBIA / 1 AUG 2011

After 48 hours, Colombian guerrilla group the FARC reportedly released five oil contract workers who were kidnapped Friday near the…

BOLIVIA / 14 MAY 2021

The extradition of a prominent Bolivian drug trafficker to Brazil has shed rare light on how family clans in the…

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…