HomeNewsBriefPeru's Illegal Mining Hotspot Has Other Crimes to Worry About
BRIEF

Peru's Illegal Mining Hotspot Has Other Crimes to Worry About

GENDER AND CRIME / 6 SEP 2019 BY LAURA MARCELA ZUÑIGA EN

Peruvian authorities dismantled a human trafficking network operating in the region of Madre de Dios, a territory known for illegal mining activity. 

The female trafficking victims were lured by promises of work, then exploited in night clubs in the cities of Lima, Callao, Madre de Dios, Trujillo, Huánuco and Ayacucho, the newspaper El Comercio reported. 

Authorities said a criminal organization called “Los Brothers" was behind the trafficking network, based in Madre de Dios. Fifteen people were arrested, including two officers with the Peruvian National Police (Policía Nacional del Perú - PNP). 

SEE ALSO: Peru Running Out of Ideas to Stop Illegal Mining in Madre de Dios

Among the arrested officers was Commander Manuel Morillo Cribilleros, chief of the Criminal Investigation Division (División de Investigación Criminal - DIVINCRI) in Puerto Maldonado, the region's capital. He was accused of providing information about police operations to the network. 

In March 2019, a massive operation was carried out to remove some 5,000 illegal gold miners from Madre de Dios -- a region of Amazon rainforest bordering Brazil and Bolivia. The intervention, however, revealed that the livelihoods of about 40,000 people were directly or indirectly dependent to illegal mining. 

InSight Crime Analysis

The bust of the human trafficking ring shows just how deep corruption runs in Madre de Dios, where bars and night clubs have long catered to illegal miners.

Sex trafficking has been rampant in this particular region. Recent busts include 44 victims rescued after the March mega operation against illegal mining. In 2017, authorities rescued six women and two underage girls forced into prostitution in the same region. In 2013, 300 women were rescued from a sex trafficking ring based in Madre de Dios.

According to figures from Peru's National Institute of Statistics and Information (Instituto Nacional de Estadística e Informática - INEI), Madre de Dios ranked third in reports of human trafficking from 2011 to 2018.  

What's more, the latest bust revealed that the sex trafficking ring had operated since 2016 and received protection from a commander who was responsible for investigating the crime but was actually profiting from it.

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

ILLEGAL MINING / 5 SEP 2014

A Peruvian research institute stated that the country's illegal mining industry pulled in $3.4 billion worth of profits over the…

GENDER AND CRIME / 16 JUN 2020

The rescue of three Venezuelan forced into sex trafficking in Mexico City has once again shone a spotlight on the…

ARGENTINA / 20 SEP 2016

A new report sheds light on the phenomenon of human trafficking involving Chinese citizens in Argentina, highlighting some of the…

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…