Investigation and Analysis of Organized Crime
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The Ghost Lives the High Life in Madrid

The Ghost, a paramilitary drug lord, has moved to Madrid with his millions of drug dollars. He has dodged the Colombian justice system and perhaps secured a pass...

Tracking the Ghost: Follow the Money

“The Ghost” had fled Medellín, tied off loose ends in the underworld and perhaps suspended his drug trafficking activities. He disappeared with millions of...

The Ghost Loses Drug Trafficking Partners

After the demobilization of the AUC in 2006, the paramilitary high command was behind bars. All except alias “Sebastían Colmenares” and his alter ego, “Memo...

The Ghost and His Paramilitary Army

In 1997, the paramilitary army began its bloody campaign across Colombia, supposedly to fight the Marxist rebels, but really to take control of the cocaine trade....

Hunting the Ghost: a Face and a Name

The hunt for “Will the Ghost,” or “Memo Fantasma” had stalled once again. The name Guillermo Camacho did not register with anyone. Had The Ghost managed to...

‘The Invisibles’ of the Drug World

Drug traffickers today have realized that their best protection is not a private army, but rather total anonymity. We call these drug lords "the invisibles." This...

A Former Warlord is Back in Colombia, Will His Drug Trafficking Empire Follow?

Authorities in Colombia have arrested an infamous former paramilitary warlord after he returned to the Andean nation upon finishing his US prison sentence for drug...
Credit: El Colombiano

Los Caparrapos

Los Caparrapos, also known as the Virgilio Peralta Arenas Front, is a criminal group linked to drug trafficking, with a strong presence in Colombia’s Antioquia...

Report Sheds Light on Private Sector Role in Colombia Conflict

A new report on the role of private economic actors in facilitating grave crimes by paramilitary groups underlines the need for Colombia’s so-called “truth...
A total of 32 former paramilitary chiefs were condemned

Colombia Convicts Former Paramilitary Leaders for Hundreds of Crimes

Dozens of individuals in Colombia have been sentenced for crimes committed while serving under the banner of demobilized paramilitary groups, illustrating how...
Colombian soldiers are permitted to combat GAO

What’s in a Name? The Politics of Latin America’s Organized Crime Lexicon

Arguing about artificial labels that help make sense of organized crime in Latin America may seem trivial. After all, the reality lurking beneath these labels --...
Hector Restrepo, alias "Perra loca"

Colombia Braces for Impact of Returning Drug Traffickers and Paramilitaries

The release of Colombian underworld boss "Perra loca" from a US prison is adding to fears that a flood of recently freed drug lords and paramilitaries could have a...