Fahd Jamil Georges, a veteran drug trafficker along the Paraguay-Brazil border, said he surrendered to authorities after being threatened by the PCC -- a reminder of how completely the Brazilian gang has come to rule this frontier.
The notorious Brazilian criminal, now 79, told a judge during a recent hearing that the First Capital Command (Primeiro Comando da Capital – PCC) had sent him threatening texts and that he feared for his life. In Ponta Porã, a Brazilian town on the Paraguay border, the PCC is "after me," he said, according to Campo Grande News citing Jamil's hearing.
Jamil, who surrendered to police in mid-April, faces a litany of charges related to organized crime, including drug trafficking, arms trafficking and corruption. He had been on the run since June 2020.
SEE ALSO: While Taking Paraguay-Brazil Border, PCC Tries to Control Its Own
In 2005, Jamil was sentenced to 20 years in prison for his involvement in international drug trafficking, money laundering and tax evasion. But he fled to Paraguay soon afterward.
At his April 19 hearing, Jamil claimed that his poor health had also contributed to his decision to surrender.
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Though the septuagenarian trafficker is no longer as formidable as when he was known as the "King of the Border," Jamil being spooked by the PCC's threats is further evidence of the power the gang wields on the Brazil-Paraguay border.
Jamil was among the most wanted men in Brazil and beyond. In 2006, the United States added him to its Foreign Narcotics Kingpins list. Jamil also had links to a militia group in Brazil's Campo Grande, the capital of the border state of Mato Grosso do Sul, and he is accused of being an intellectual author in the 1991 killing of a Paraguayan journalist, Santiago Leguizamón.
Jamil, who presented himself in Paraguay as a wealthy property owner and horse-breeder, counted among his friends former Paraguay dictator Alfredo Stroessner and former President Andrés Rodríguez (1989-1993), according to Paraguayan media outlet Última Hora. Jamil also conducted business with former President Horacio Cartes (2013-2018), who admitted to receiving payments from Jamil.
SEE ALSO: First Capital Command – PCC Profile
But traffickers like Jamil have largely been sidelined by the PCC, which now controls much of the drug trade in the Paraguay-Brazil border region. The group maintains a strong presence in the eastern Paraguayan frontier cities of Pedro Juan Caballero, Capitán Bado, Salto del Guairá and Ciudad del Este.
The PCC has been able to take control of cross-border smuggling routes as part of its “Project Paraguay” strategy, which was reportedly hatched by its leaders as far back as 2010.
Prior to taking over the region, the gang had maintained an uneasy alliance with drug trafficker Jarvis Chimenes Pavão and Brazil's other major gang, the Red Command (Comando Vermelho – CV).
Pavão, who was once one of South America’s most prominent drug traffickers, formerly worked under the auspices of Jamil at the border. His downfall, like that of his mentor, paralleled the PCC's rise in the region.