HomeNewsBriefCourt Docs Describe Sinaloa Cartel Expansion in Australia
BRIEF

Court Docs Describe Sinaloa Cartel Expansion in Australia

EL CHAPO / 11 FEB 2013 BY ELYSSA PACHICO EN

Documents filed in a US District Court describe how an alleged Sinaloa Cartel collaborator discussed the use of private aircraft to move millions of dollars of cash between Australia and the US, as part of the cocaine trade.

As The Australian reports, court documents filed by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) recount how a Sinaloa Cartel collaborator, referred to as "Individual A," met with an undercover agent posing as a pilot in Illinois and discussed shipping cocaine and cash between Australia and the US.

Individual A said that his organization would move millions of dollars from Australia to the US, use the funds to buy cocaine, then move it back to Australia. Individual A was later arrested by authorities and agreed to become an informant.  He collaborated in the capture last year of Chicago-based Sinaloa Cartel collaborator, Jose Mares Barregan.

The Australian Crime Comission said that the Sinaloa Cartel was expanding inside the country thanks to the value of the Australian dollar, as well as a growing domestic market for cocaine. 

InSight Crime Analysis

The Illinois case serves as further indication of the increased role that Mexican cartels are playing in the international transhipment and distribution of cocaine. Mexico groups like the Sinaloa Cartel have now replaced Colombian criminal syndicates as the primary global distributors of cocaine, while the Colombian role now mainly consists of selling product to the Mexican groups. While Colombian groups do control some international trafficking routes -- particularly into Spain and Europe -- this is increasingly becoming the exception rather than the rule. 

The increased value of cocaine in Australia is possibly one reason why the Sinaloa Cartel sees the country as such a lucrative market. A kilo of cocaine in Texas sells for $16,000, compared to up to $250,000 in Sydney, as NPR reported last year

The Mexican organization is thought to collaborate with local Australian criminal groups in the distribution of cocaine, including biker gangs

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

MEXICO / 2 DEC 2015

Formulating effective strategies to combat Mexico-based crime organizations requires a nuanced understanding of their economic structures, says award-winning…

ECUADOR / 7 JAN 2011

In 2009, Ecuadorean authorities stopped 63 tons of cocaine, a record for Ecuador and a nearly 100 percent increase from…

EL CHAPO / 1 NOV 2010

Mexican drug lord Joaquin Guzmán Loera, alias "El Chapo," heads up an alliance of powerful drug traffickers known…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Who Are Memo Fantasma and Sergio Roberto de Carvalho?

24 JUN 2022

Inside the criminal career of Memo Fantasma  In March 2020, InSight Crime revealed the identity and whereabouts of Memo Fantasma, a paramilitary commander and drug trafficker living in…

THE ORGANIZATION

Environmental and Academic Praise

17 JUN 2022

InSight Crime’s six-part series on the plunder of the Peruvian Amazon continues to inform the debate on environmental security in the region. Our Environmental Crimes Project Manager, María Fernanda Ramírez,…

LA ORGANIZACIÓN

Series on Plunder of Peru’s Amazon Makes Headlines

10 JUN 2022

Since launching on June 2, InSight Crime’s six-part series on environmental crime in Peru’s Amazon has been well-received. Detailing the shocking impunity enjoyed by those plundering the rainforest, the investigation…

THE ORGANIZATION

Duarte’s Death Makes Waves

3 JUN 2022

The announcement of the death of Gentil Duarte, one of the top dissident commanders of the defunct Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), continues to reverberate in Venezuela and Colombia.

THE ORGANIZATION

Cattle Trafficking Acclaim, Investigation into Peru’s Amazon 

27 MAY 2022

On May 18, InSight Crime launched its most recent investigation into cattle trafficking between Central America and Mexico. It showed precisely how beef, illicitly produced in Honduras, Guatemala…