HomeNewsBriefColombia Money Laundering Case Reminder of Cali Cartel’s Influence
BRIEF

Colombia Money Laundering Case Reminder of Cali Cartel's Influence

COLOMBIA / 28 FEB 2014 BY JAMES BARGENT EN

The children of Cali Cartel founders the Rodriguez Orejeula brothers are facing money laundering charges in Colombia in another reminder of the continued presence of one of the pioneers of large-scale cocaine trafficking.

A Bogota judge has ruled that five children of Gilberto and Miguel Rodriguez Orejuela must stand trial for allegedly concealing funds their fathers were supposed to have turned over as part of the deals they cut with the US authorities, reported Semana.

In 2006, the Cali Cartel capos accepted 30-year prison sentences in the United States and agreed to turn in all of their drug trade wealth in return for immunity for their families.

SEE ALSO: Colombia News and Profiles

However, the US authorities demanded Colombian prosecutors look into reports they had concealed a fortune through legal businesses run by family members.

The investigation that followed revealed financial transactions in the family businesses that were indicative of money laundering, as well as a raft of suspicious business practices and the suspect sale of a chain of pharmacies.

The family will now have to prove in court that their considerable business portfolio is not founded on drug money.

InSight Crime Analysis

The Cali Cartel, along with Pablo Escobar's Medellin Cartel, were the driving force of the Colombian cocaine boom of the 1980s and 1990s and after the death of Escobar were arguably the world's richest and most powerful drug cartel.

The organization's downfall continues to influence the Colombian underworld today, and not just in the illicit financial activities of the Rodriguez Orejuela family as they try to cling on to the remnants of the billion dollar fortune the cartel leaders amassed.

Two former Cali Cartel drug traffickers who have served prison sentences in the United States are believed to be major figures in the violent dispute for drug trafficking that rages today in Cali and the Valle del Cauca region.

Victor Patiño Fomeque, alias "El Quimico," who also worked with the Cali Cartel's successor, the Norte Del Valle Cartel (NDVC), is believed to be a major influence on the alliance of NDVC linked traffickers now fighting on behalf of the Urabeños.

This coalition's fight to control the region has been complicated by the return of another Cali capo known as "El Señor de la R," who recently returned to Colombia and is attempting to retake control of the cartel's old operations, according to police. El Señor de la R is reportedly a family member of the Rodriguez Orejuela brothers' Cali co-leader Helmer "Pacho" Herrera -- possibly his brother Ramiro Herrera Buitrago, who ran cartel operations in New York.

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.

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 / 5 AUG 2013

Ecuadorean authorities confiscated $3 million in smuggled goods during the first six months of 2013 at a new checkpoint on…

COLOMBIA / 19 MAY 2020

The Colombian government's latest offer of legal benefits to individuals of armed groups who surrender and face justice was met…

COLOMBIA / 13 JUL 2017

  The Bajo Cauca Franchise BACRIM-Land Armed Power Dynamics The BACRIM in places like the region of…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Unraveling the Web of Elites Connected to Organized Crime

27 JUL 2021

InSight Crime published Elites and Organized Crime in Nicaragua, a deep dive into the relationships between criminal actors and elites in that Central American nation.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime’s Greater Focus on US-Mexico Border

20 JUL 2021

InSight Crime has decided to turn many of its investigative resources towards understanding and chronicling the criminal dynamics along the US-Mexico border.

THE ORGANIZATION

Key Arrests and Police Budget Increases Due to InSight Crime Investigations

8 JUL 2021

With Memo Fantasma’s arrest, InSight Crime has proven that our investigations can and will uncover major criminal threats in the Americas.

THE ORGANIZATION

Organized Crime’s Influence on Gender-Based Violence

30 JUN 2021

InSight Crime investigator Laura N. Ávila spoke on organized crime and gender-based violence at the launch of a research project by the United Nations Development Programme.

THE ORGANIZATION

Conversation with Paraguay Judicial Operators on PCC

24 JUN 2021

InSight Crime Co-director Steven Dudley formed part of a panel attended by over 500 students, all of whom work in Paraguay's judicial system.