HomeNewsBriefDrug Trafficking Aircraft Thieves Face Little Action from Argentina
BRIEF

Drug Trafficking Aircraft Thieves Face Little Action from Argentina

ARGENTINA / 16 FEB 2015 BY MICHAEL LOHMULLER EN

A new investigation has highlighted the growing theft of private airplanes by drug traffickers in Argentina, with authorities in the country apparently showing little signs of attempting to address the problem. 

Within the last 18 months, the Argentine Federation of Air Clubs (FADA) said groups linked to drug and contraband trafficking have stolen eight planes from the country’s 400 private air clubs, reported La Nacion.

Oscar Repetto, the president of FADA, said, “The air is the most secure way for trafficking drugs, “ noting that planes -- such as a Cessna 182 -- are able to transport 400 to 500 kilos of drugs into neighboring countries if the seats are removed.

Fearful of having planes stolen, Repetto said that “air clubs have adopted the habit of leaving planes without batteries or gas.” According to La Nacion, in just the past three months two attempts were made to rob planes in the town of Casilda, located about 60 kilometers from the eastern city of Rosario.

Argentina’s National Administration of Civil Aviation (ANAC) said that no registry of stolen planes exists, and that ANAC has no responsibility for providing security to private air clubs. According to La Nacion, sources within ANAC said in many cases it appears pilots with detailed knowledge of local hangers are used to help steal planes.

InSight Crime Analysis

The theft of private airplanes in Argentina is an indication of the continuing appeal for drug traffickers in the region of moving their product via air using light aircraft.

SEE ALSO: Coverage of Argentina

Using planes to move drugs has been prevalent in Colombia and Bolivia, and especially in Peru, where it has been estimated some 90 percent of cocaine produced in the VRAEM is exported to neighboring countries by air.

Some countries have taken steps to combat the issue, with Peru announcing last year its intent to purchase new military planes and a new radar system. Honduras has also approved a law authorizing suspected drug planes to be shot down. Meanwhile Colombia has reported a 99 percent drop in drug flights after the erstablishment of a no-fly zone -- a measure Peru is reportedly seeking to emulate

Enforcement and regulation in Argentina, however, appear to be lax, with the La Nacion investigation detailing the ability of a pilot convicted of drug offenses to continue to actively facilitate air trafficking.

Indeed, Argentine authorities seem to be doing little to stop the problem, despite some 1,400 unauthorized runways being recently identified 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

ARGENTINA / 20 SEP 2018

The trial of more than 30 members of Argentina’s most notorious and violent criminal organization, the Monos, on drug trafficking…

ARGENTINA / 3 APR 2020

Drug traffickers are nothing if not innovative. And faced with increasingly sophisticated techniques for detecting drugs, they have been forced…

ARGENTINA / 8 AUG 2012

In the town of Salvador Mazza, northern Argentina, drug traffickers cross the nearby border with Bolivia with ease, reportedly bringing…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Gender and Investigative Techniques Focus of Workshops

26 NOV 2021

On November 23-24, InSight Crime conducted a workshop called “How to Cover Organized Crime: Investigation Techniques and A Focus on Gender.” The session convened reporters and investigators from a dozen…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Names Two New Board Members

19 NOV 2021

In recent weeks, InSight Crime added two new members to its board. Joy Olson is the former executive director of the Washington Office on Latin America…

THE ORGANIZATION

Senate Commission in Paraguay Cites InSight Crime

12 NOV 2021

InSight Crime’s reporting and investigations often reach the desks of diplomats, security officials and politicians. The latest example occurred in late October during a commission of Paraguay's Senate that tackled…

THE ORGANIZATION

Backing Investigative Journalism Around the Globe

5 NOV 2021

InSight Crime was a proud supporter of this year's Global Investigative Journalism Conference, which took place November 1 through November 5 and convened nearly 2,000 journalists…

THE ORGANIZATION

Tracking Dirty Money and Tren de Aragua

29 OCT 2021

InSight Crime was delighted to support investigative reporting in the Americas through a workshop with our friends at Connectas, a non-profit journalism initiative that facilitates collaboration…