Former Guatemalan Interior Minister Mauricio López Bonilla -- a decorated war hero and a longtime US ally -- finds himself treading water amidst a flurry of accusations about corruption and his connections to drug traffickers. López Bonilla is not the most well-known suspect in the cases against former Guatemalan officials, but the multiple schemes connected to him represent the apex of the Guatemalan state's spiral towards a mafia state, and the complicated and perhaps ongoing relationship between him and the international community.Read More
A Supreme Court magistrate in Guatemala has allegedly pressured a judge handling her son's case, leading the latter official to leave the country in an affair symbolic of Guatemala's ongoing struggle against corruption and elite interference with anti-corruption efforts.
Former Haitian rebel leader and Senator-elect Guy Philippe pleaded not guilty to drug trafficking and money laundering charges presented today in a Miami court, a case that seems to be a message to other political elites in Haiti suspected of criminal activities.
The newly appointed vice president of Venezuela has reportedly been investigated by the United States for involvement in the drug trade, making him the most recent official with suspected criminal ties to take a top position in the Venezuelan government.
As the year closed, the successes and failures of the fight against corruption, impunity and organized crime in the Northern Triangle combine to leave a bitter-sweet taste.