HomeNewsBriefDoes Arrest Mark the End of the Shining Path in North Peru?
BRIEF

Does Arrest Mark the End of the Shining Path in North Peru?

PERU / 10 DEC 2013 BY JAMES BARGENT EN

Authorities in Peru have declared the end of the northern faction of the Shining Path guerrillas after arresting the man believed to be its latest leader, a claim they have made before but which is probably not far from the truth.

On December 9, a specialist intelligence unit arrested Alexander Dimas Fabian Huaman, alias “Hector,” in the department of Huanuco, reported El Comercio.

According to officials, Huaman heads the remnants of the Shining Path faction that operates in the Huallaga valley and had been attempting to collect finances and rebuild the organization after the arrest of leader Florindo Eleuterio Flores Hala, alias “Comrade Artemio,” in early 2012.

Following Huaman’s arrest, the chief of the police anti-drugs unit, Víctor Romero Fernandez, said the Shining Path “is disappearing from this zone.”

InSight Crime Analysis

After the capture of the Shining Path’s founding leader Abimael Guzman in 1992, the remnants of the guerrillas split into two factions, one in the northern region of the Huallaga valley, which remained loyal to Guzman, the other in the south eastern region known as the Apurimac, Ene and Mantaro River Valley (VRAEM), which declared Guzman a traitor to the cause.

SEE ALSO: Shining Path Profile

At the time of the arrest of the Huallaga faction leader Artemio, authorities similarly hailed the death of the Shining Path in the region, which, as shown by the arrest of his alleged successor nearly two years later, now seems premature.

However, while the Shining Path may not have been completely wiped out in the region, and even now remnants may still be active, it is true that they have not been a significant force since the arrest of Artemio.

One of the main indicators of this has been the gap left by their absence from the drug trade. While the extent of their involvement in drug trafficking has remained a contentious point, the guerrillas were at least involved in protecting and taxing coca cultivation. Since the arrest of Artemio, eradication efforts in the region have increased, suggesting coca farmers can no longer count on Shining Path protection.

However, there have also been allegations the VRAEM faction, which is believed to have closer ties to the drug trade, have sent in their own fighters to halt eradication efforts in the region, raising the possibility they could be the force that fills the vacuum left by their defeated rivals.

Compartir icon icon icon

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.

Related Content

BOLIVIA / 8 AUG 2011

Peruvian authorities have dismissed Maoist guerrillas the Shining Path as "narco-terrorists" whose primary aim is drug trafficking. But the arrest…

PERU / 20 JUN 2013

Police in Peru have been accused of executing two escaped prisoners to secure their silence, offering a timely illustration of…

PERU / 20 MAR 2017

Guerrillas of Peru's Shining Path rebels recently killed three policemen in the country's main coca-producing region, a sign that the…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

We Have Updated Our Website

4 FEB 2021

Welcome to our new home page. We have revamped the site to create a better display and reader experience.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Events – Border Crime: The Northern Triangle and Tri-Border Area

ARGENTINA / 25 JAN 2021

Through several rounds of extensive field investigations, our researchers have analyzed and mapped out the main illicit economies and criminal groups present in 39 border departments spread across the six countries of study – the Northern Triangle trio of Guatemala, Honduras, and El…

BRIEF

InSight Crime’s ‘Memo Fantasma’ Investigation Wins Simón Bolívar National Journalism Prize

COLOMBIA / 20 NOV 2020

The staff at InSight Crime was awarded the prestigious Simón Bolívar national journalism prize in Colombia for its two-year investigation into the drug trafficker known as “Memo Fantasma,” which was…

ANALYSIS

InSight Crime – From Uncovering Organized Crime to Finding What Works

COLOMBIA / 12 NOV 2020

This project began 10 years ago as an effort to address a problem: the lack of daily coverage, investigative stories and analysis of organized crime in the Americas. …

ANALYSIS

InSight Crime – Ten Years of Investigating Organized Crime in the Americas

FEATURED / 2 NOV 2020

In early 2009, Steven Dudley was in Medellín, Colombia. His assignment: speak to a jailed paramilitary leader in the Itagui prison, just south of the city. Following his interview inside…