HomeNewsBriefDrug Chemical Seizures up 22% in Guatemala
BRIEF

Drug Chemical Seizures up 22% in Guatemala

GUATEMALA / 31 AUG 2012 BY TRACEY KNOTT AND ELYSSA PACHICO EN

So far in 2012 Guatemala has seized 22 percent more chemicals used to produce drugs than in the same period the previous year, highlighting the country's growing status as a hub for the precursor trade.

Interior Minister Mauricio Lopez Bonilla said that between January and August, authorities seized 13,763 containers of precursor chemicals used in drug production, up 22 percent from last year, Prensa Libre reported.

Notably, the statistics did not include the total weight of the precursors seized, which is how Guatemala's statistics on precursor chemicals are usually given. As a point of comparison, last year authorities reported seizing some 1,600 tons or 7,847 barrels of precursor chemicals in Guatemala, about four times the amount confiscated in 2010.

InSight Crime Analysis

If Guatemala is seizing more precursor chemicals, this suggests that either customs and law enforcement have improved their ability to track and confiscate such materials, or that the sheer amount of precursors trafficked through Guatemala is growing. Since the Interior Ministry's most recent figures refer to the number of containers seized, rather than the bulk amount of the chemicals, this doesn't give a clear idea of whether the government has actually seized a larger quantity of liquid chemicals than last year, or merely more containers.

There are reports that Guatemala is increasingly being used a center of methamphetamine and synthetic drug production by the Sinaloa Cartel, which has driven up the demand for precursors inside the country. In April, Guatemala seized over 80,000 liters of meth precursor chemicals valued at $6 million. The chemicals had reportedly been shipped from China and were headed for Honduras.

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

FENTANYL / 14 APR 2021

Seizures of the deadly synthetic opioid fentanyl by customs agents in the United States have skyrocketed nationwide, underscoring potential shifts…

ELITES AND CRIME / 30 OCT 2020

In what appears to be a show of support from Washington for Guatemala’s anti-corruption fight, US Secretary of State Mike…

GUATEMALA / 11 JUN 2013

Cases of stolen Guatemalan babies are on the rise again, says an independent child welfare organization in that country, indicating…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Tackles Illegal Fishing

15 OCT 2021

In October, InSight Crime and American University’s Center for Latin American and Latino Studies (CLALS) began a year-long project on illegal, unreported, unregulated (IUU) fishing in…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Featured in Handbook for Reporting on Organized Crime

8 OCT 2021

In late September, the Global Investigative Journalism Network (GIJN) published an excerpt of its forthcoming guide on reporting organized crime in Indonesia.

THE ORGANIZATION

Probing Organized Crime in Haiti

1 OCT 2021

InSight Crime has made it a priority to investigate organized crime in Haiti, where an impotent state is reeling after the July assassination of President Jovenel Moïse, coupled with an…

THE ORGANIZATION

Emergency First Aid in Hostile Environments

24 SEP 2021

At InSight Crime's annual treat, we ramped up hostile environment and emergency first aid training for our 40-member staff, many of whom conduct on-the-ground investigations in dangerous corners of the region.

THE ORGANIZATION

Series on Environmental Crime in the Amazon Generates Headlines

17 SEP 2021

InSight Crime and the Igarapé Institute have been delighted at the response to our joint investigation into environmental crimes in the Colombian Amazon. Coverage of our chapters dedicated to illegal mining…