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About This Project
Elites and Organized Crime
is a multiyear project financed by the International Development Research Centre that investigates the dynamics between organized crime and elites in four countries: Honduras, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Colombia.
Brazil's chief prosecutor highlighted the importance of international cooperation in ongoing probes of the biggest corruption cases in the country's history. But while multilateral exchanges of information and best practices have helped advance these investigations, they also may have some potential drawbacks.
A former presidential candidate, who was also a minister during the administration of jailed former Guatemalan President Otto Pérez Molina, has been accused of running a corruption and money laundering network, revealing another chapter in the story of Guatemala's mafia state.
On the surface, former Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva's 9-year sentence for corruption seems reminiscent of numerous corruption cases targeting former or current presidents in Latin America. But behind the accusations are varying degrees of collusion and control, from heading a criminal enterprise to a one-off criminal act of personal enrichment.
The arrest of Medellín's security secretary in north Colombia has rocked the city establishment and challenged the political elite's prevailing narrative it has spent years promoting. But was he mediating with criminals for the sake of peace and security or working at the service of the mafia?
A customs fraud that allegedly allowed a criminal network to steal millions from Argentina's government looks eerily similar to how some of Venezuela's private businesses and corrupt government officials have also benefitted from that Andean nation's efforts to manipulate currency values.