All About Extortion

ARGENTINA / 3 FEB 2021

As workers across Latin America struggle to stay afloat amid economic strain caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, loan sharks offering abusive interest rates have cornered the market, forcing workers seeking…

BARRIO 18 / 29 JAN 2021

It was one of Alejandro Giammattei’s most emphatic promises. One year later, the Interior Ministry supported his strategy to reduce extortions by cutting off access to communication devices among the…

ECUADOR / 2 JAN 2021

The persistent robbery, extortion, assault and even murder of shrimp farm workers by armed gangs in Ecuador has led the shrimp sector to once more demand gun reforms, in a…

BRAZIL / 18 DEC 2020

“Plata o Plomo” is an overused phrase to describe the way criminals threaten officials and civilians to ensure compliance with their wishes. In one Brazilian case, it seems more appropriately…

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 17 NOV 2020

A series of assassinations on Ecuador’s southern border with Peru have been attributed to gang members fighting for control of the illegal crossings by which both people and contraband are…

BARRIO 18 / 1 OCT 2020

This is the second part of a three-part series on San Salvador’s Historic Center, the heart of the country’s informal urban markets and a long-time bastion of the street gangs.

BARRIO 18 / 1 OCT 2020

It was late 2016 and officials in San Salvador were preparing for the grand opening of a sparkling new market in the city’s Historic Center.

EXTORTION / 7 SEP 2020

With dozens of Venezuelan athletes now playing on Major League Baseball teams in the United States, a powerful gang has begun to extort local academies and scouts in charge of…

EXTORTION / 1 SEP 2020

Extortion can be defined as the action through which one individual obtains a resource from another through intimidation or threat of violence. This criminal activity has been used by organized…

ARGENTINA / 7 JUL 2020

A criminal group in Argentina has found a novel target for extortion: black market currency dealers who are moving large amounts of cash to dollar-hungry Argentines in an economy hit…

BARRIO 18 / 16 JUN 2020

Police in Guatemala say the economic pressures stemming from the coronavirus lockdown are exacerbating internal divisions within the Barrio 18 street gang, a symptom of the structural weaknesses that have…

COVID AND CRIME / 13 APR 2020

The measures in the fight against the coronavirus in Central America have caused two starkly different reactions from criminal groups, some are continuing to extort local populations while others have…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Guatemala Social Insecurity Investigation Makes Front Page News

10 DEC 2021

InSight Crime’s latest investigation into a case of corruption within Guatemala's social security agency linked to the deaths of patients with kidney disease made waves in…

THE ORGANIZATION

Venezuela El Dorado Investigation Makes Headlines

3 DEC 2021

InSight Crime's investigation into the trafficking of illegal gold in Venezuela's Amazon region generated impact on both social media and in the press. Besides being republished and mentioned by several…

THE ORGANIZATION

Gender and Investigative Techniques Focus of Workshops

26 NOV 2021

On November 23-24, InSight Crime conducted a workshop called “How to Cover Organized Crime: Investigation Techniques and A Focus on Gender.” The session convened reporters and investigators from a dozen…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Names Two New Board Members

19 NOV 2021

In recent weeks, InSight Crime added two new members to its board. Joy Olson is the former executive director of the Washington Office on Latin America…

THE ORGANIZATION

Senate Commission in Paraguay Cites InSight Crime

12 NOV 2021

InSight Crime’s reporting and investigations often reach the desks of diplomats, security officials and politicians. The latest example occurred in late October during a commission of Paraguay's Senate that tackled…