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.

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

CARIBBEAN / 9 JUL 2021

Two days on from the nighttime assassination of Haiti President Jovenel Moïse in Port-au-Prince, competing theories have failed to provide…

COLOMBIA / 26 MAY 2022

Prosecutors in Colombia held a hearing with the partner of alleged drug trafficker Guillermo León Acevedo, alias "Memo Fantasma," on…

BOLIVIA / 8 NOV 2022

The Amazon is one of the world’s most biodiverse regions, where wildlife trafficking threatens hundreds of thousands of species.

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Europe Coverage Makes a Splash

20 JAN 2023

Last week, InSight Crime published an analysis of the role of Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport as an arrival hub for cocaine and methamphetamine from Mexico.  The article was picked up by…

THE ORGANIZATION

World Looks to InSight Crime for Mexico Expertise

13 JAN 2023

Our coverage of the arrest of Chapitos’ co-founder Ovidio Guzmán López in Mexico has received worldwide attention.In the UK, outlets including The Independent and BBC…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Shares Expertise with US State Department

16 DEC 2022

Last week, InSight Crime Co-founder Steven Dudley took part in the International Anti-Corruption Conference organized by the US State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, & Labor and…

THE ORGANIZATION

Immediate Response to US-Mexico Marijuana Investigation

9 DEC 2022

InSight Crime’s investigation into how the legalization of marijuana in many US states has changed Mexico’s criminal dynamics made a splash this week appearing on the front page of…

THE ORGANIZATION

‘Ndrangheta Investigation, Exclusive Interview With Suriname President Make Waves

2 DEC 2022

Two weeks ago, InSight Crime published an investigation into how Italian mafia clan the ‘Ndrangheta built a cocaine trafficking network from South America to ‘Ndrangheta-controlled Italian ports. The investigation generated…