HomeNewsBriefMassacre Points to High-Value Drug Sales in Bogota
BRIEF

Massacre Points to High-Value Drug Sales in Bogota

COLOMBIA / 14 JAN 2013 BY HANNAH STONE EN

After five reported members of a local street gang in Bogota were gunned down, a new report suggests the group was earning up to $300,000 a month in drug sales, highlighting the potential profits of micro-trafficking in Colombia’s cities.

Caracol Radio reported that the Pascuales, a gang based in nothern Bogota, have some 20 drug distribution points in the area, each of which bring in 800,000 to 1 million pesos a day. This would put their total monthly income from the drug trade in northern Bogota at some 540 million pesos (over $300,000), although Caracol quotes a far lower monthly figure of 80 million pesos.

According to the radio network, the Pascuales' distribution points are mostly staffed by minors who work under the supervision of more experienced dealers, in order to avoid attracting attention from police. 

The Pascuales operate in Bogota's Usaquen neighborhood and have been active since the 1990s. The organization reportedly started out selling "security" services to local residents and businesses, then moved into drug trafficking.

InSight Crime Analysis

Five people, thought to be members of the Pascuales, were killed in a firefight in Usaquen on January 7 (see video report, below). The deaths were reportedly linked to a dispute with another group, the Luisitos, over control of drug sales and extortion activities in the area, as national newspaper El Tiempo reported. The numbers quoted by Caracol Radio make it clear that with such high profits from local drug sales at stake, this likely sparked the tensions between the rival gangs and may have driven them to open warfare.

Domestic drug sales have become increasingly important in Colombia in recent years, as the authorities have made it harder for drug traffickers to move their product out of the country. The dismantling of large-scale organizations like the Medellin and Cali Cartels, both of which relied primarily on profits from the transnational drug trade, and the capture of major traffickers like Daniel "El Loco" Barrera, has fragmented Colombia's underworld and made local criminal groups more reliant on the domestic market.

The presence of a growing middle class in Colombia has also helped criminals build up a profitable market for drugs within the country, allowing small groups without international connections to enter the business, and avoid the risks of moving drug shipments across borders.

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

COLOMBIA / 11 MAY 2021

Colombia’s current political crisis has led to severe clashes between police and protesters in many of the country’s largest cities.

AUC / 11 MAR 2022

Alleged drug trafficker alias "Memo Fantasma" or "Will the Ghost," was formally charged during a March 9 virtual audience, of…

COCAINE / 9 JUN 2022

An ingenious Italian-Colombian sting operation has arrested dozens of people on both continents and seized a huge quantity of cocaine,…

About InSight Crime

LA ORGANIZACIÓN

Extensive Coverage of our Chronicles of a Cartel Bodyguard

23 SEP 2022

Our recent investigation, A Cartel Bodyguard in Mexico’s 'Hot Land', has received extensive media coverage.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime, American University Host Illegal Fishing Panel

19 SEP 2022

InSight Crime and the Center for Latin American & Latino Studies (CLALS) at American University discussed the findings of a joint investigation on IUU fishing at a September 9 conference.

THE ORGANIZATION

Impact on the Media Landscape

9 SEP 2022

InSight Crime’s first investigation on the Dominican Republic made an immediate impact on the Dominican media landscape, with major news outlets republishing and reprinting our findings, including in …

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Sharpens Its Skills

2 SEP 2022

Last week, the InSight Crime team gathered for our annual retreat in Colombia, where we discussed our vision and strategy for the next 12 months.  During the week, we also learned how to…

THE ORGANIZATION

Colombia’s Fragile Path to Peace Begins to Take Shape

26 AUG 2022

InSight Crime is charting the progress of President Gustavo Petro’s agenda as he looks to revolutionize Colombia’s security policy, opening dialogue with guerrillas, reforming the military and police, and…