HomeNewsBriefColombia's Urabeños, FARC Collaborated in Police Attack: Govt
BRIEF

Colombia's Urabeños, FARC Collaborated in Police Attack: Govt

COLOMBIA / 17 SEP 2014 BY DAVID GAGNE EN

An attack on police in Colombia that was allegedly coordinated by the FARC and the Urabeños suggests a new relationship may be emerging between the rebel army and the BACRIM group.

Colombian Defense Minister Juan Carlos Pinzon and President Juan Manuel Santos have attributed a September 16 attack that left seven police dead and seven others wounded in the Cordoba province to the 58th Front of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the Urabeños criminal group, reported Semana. The police were conducting a morning patrol in the town of Montelibano when they were ambushed, reported EFE.

"This crime will not go unpunished," announced President Santos in a statement he gave at the Presidential Palace.

According to Semana, the attack was retaliation for a September 5 gun battle with security forces in which Urabeños leader Dario Antonio Usuga, alias "Otoniel," sustained injuries. The offensive against the police was allegedly ordered by the third-ranking member of the Urabeños, Cesar Daniel Anaya Martinez, alias "Tierra," who was captured by police in a rural part of the Antioquia province on September 7.

InSight Crime Analysis

If allegations the FARC and the Urabeños are committing coordinated attacks are true, this may signal a new level of cooperation between the left-wing guerrilla army and the BACRIM group (from the Spanish abbreviation for "criminal band"). Until now, the FARC have been content to sell their coca base to the highest bidder, and to remain on the sidelines as the BACRIM groups have fought each other for power.

Unlike their paramilitary predecessors, BACRIM groups have not been interested in fighting the FARC for control of coca crops. To the contrary, the Urabeños and other BACRIM have been known to buy coca base from the rebel group. In 2013, an emissary from the FARC's 58th Front and members of the Urabeños were captured in a drug laboratory together

SEE ALSO: FARC, Peace and Possible Criminalization

However, this appears to be the first report of coordinated attacks by the two groups, suggesting their ties may now be extending beyond business negotiations. InSight Crime has previously predicted that some elements of the guerrillas could break away from the FARC hierarchy in order to continue conducting criminal activities, rather than adhering to any peace agreement that might emerge from talks being conducted with the government in Cuba. As this dialogue progresses, it is possible that some FARC factions are already looking to join forces with existing criminal networks, such as the Urabeños.

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

COCAINE / 22 MAR 2018

An ongoing conflict between Colombia’s two last remaining guerrilla groups continues to escalate along the Colombia-Venezuela border, highlighting the region’s…

COLOMBIA / 27 NOV 2019

An attack on a police station in the municipality of Santander de Quilichao, located in the northern part of Colombia’s…

COLOMBIA / 31 AUG 2012

Colombia announced the seizure of 400 kilos of illegally mined tungsten in the east of the country, highlighting how its…

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…