All About El Salvador

DRUG POLICY / 24 MAY 2019

In late March, President Donald Trump followed up on his threat to suspend US aid to El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala, He had repeatedly made this pledge, stating that these…

EL SALVADOR / 21 MAY 2019

A new US list of corruption suspects in Central America includes officials with ties to sitting presidents -- an important step in recognizing how deeply corruption has penetrated these countries'…

EL SALVADOR / 30 APR 2019

Authorities in El Salvador are keen to expand a much-praised local policing model believed to have helped two rural communities tackle bloody gang control. But a visit to the areas revealed a…

EL SALVADOR / 30 APR 2019

Widespread fear of street gangs in the Northern Triangle countries is being exploited by copycat groups who pose as gang members to extort victims. These criminal operators are now an…

EL SALVADOR / 26 APR 2019

El Salvador’s groundbreaking "Operación Jaque" (Operation Check) has provided a wealth of information on the Mara Salvatrucha (MS13), revealing the gang’s financial inner workings, its money laundering mechanisms and details…

The notorious Mara Salvatrucha (MS13) and 18th Street Gang (Barrio 18) are behind the majority of extortion rackets in the Northern Triangle. The development of their criminal structures over the…

Although gangs dominate the extortion markets in Central America, corrupt state agents will collude with them and even run some of their own extortion schemes.

The variety of extortionists in Central America speaks to the ease with which opportunists can set up their own schemes. Independent actors have taken advantage of the low barriers entry…

Through the use of violence, the Mara Salvatrucha (MS13) and 18th Street Gang (Barrio 18)  have become the most feared criminal brands in the Northern Triangle. Much of their violence…

EL SALVADOR / 26 APR 2019

Financial extortion in El Salvador spares neither women nor men. But women simultaneously suffer from a more insidious form of extortion shaped by the threat of sexual violence that blurs…

EL SALVADOR / 26 APR 2019

El Salvador’s sugarcane industry and the national police have succeeded in reining in extortion in the countryside by way of a private-public partnership that stands as a potential blueprint for rural economic actors to follow across…

In terms of total monetary loss due to extortion, El Salvador tops all Northern Triangle countries. The country pays out an estimated $400 million a year in extortion. One of…

About InSight Crime

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InSight Crime Events – Border Crime: The Northern Triangle and Tri-Border Area

ARGENTINA / 25 JAN 2021

Through several rounds of extensive field investigations, our researchers have analyzed and mapped out the main illicit economies and criminal groups present in 39 border departments spread across the six countries of study – the Northern Triangle trio of Guatemala, Honduras, and El…

BRIEF

InSight Crime’s ‘Memo Fantasma’ Investigation Wins Simón Bolívar National Journalism Prize

COLOMBIA / 20 NOV 2020

The staff at InSight Crime was awarded the prestigious Simón Bolívar national journalism prize in Colombia for its two-year investigation into the drug trafficker known as “Memo Fantasma,” which was…

ANALYSIS

InSight Crime – From Uncovering Organized Crime to Finding What Works

COLOMBIA / 12 NOV 2020

This project began 10 years ago as an effort to address a problem: the lack of daily coverage, investigative stories and analysis of organized crime in the Americas. …

ANALYSIS

InSight Crime – Ten Years of Investigating Organized Crime in the Americas

FEATURED / 2 NOV 2020

In early 2009, Steven Dudley was in Medellín, Colombia. His assignment: speak to a jailed paramilitary leader in the Itagui prison, just south of the city. Following his interview inside…