Sandwiched between Argentina and Brazil, Paraguay’s strategic location allows its criminal actors – who have increasingly relied on rampant corruption – to ship drugs through South America and on to Europe. While the country does not have any homegrown hegemonic criminal organizations, guerrillas from the Paraguayan People’s Army (Ejercito del Pueblo Paraguayo – EPP) continue to test the state’s authority while securing income through extorting rural landowners and kidnapping. Cigarette and other contraband smuggling is rife.
Paraguay has long been a key link in South America's drug trafficking chain, but has grown in importance with the emergence of new criminal players and economies.
Marcelo “Piloto” Pinheiro was considered one of the Brazilian government’s most sought-after drug traffickers until 2017. He is believed to have once been the second-in-command of the Red Command (Comando…
In a Paraguay border state, drug traffickers and dirty politicians find common ground, and political fights spill into the underworld.