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InSide Colombia's BACRIM: Murder

InSide Colombia's BACRIM: Murder

  Life of a Sicario Anatomy of a Hit   The BACRIM's control over territories such as the north Colombian region of Bajo Cauca comes at the point of a gun, and death is a constant price of their power. In rural sectors, uniformed BACRIM armed with assault rifles still patrol in units that are a throwback to their paramilitary origins. But in the urban centers, their capacity for violence lies with their more hidden networks of "sicarios," or hitmen. Life of a Sicario The sicario is one of the more specialized roles amongst the ranks of the BACRIM. Their only job is to kill or to...

Colombia’s New Crop Substitution Plan Facing Old Obstacles: Report

Colombia’s New Crop Substitution Plan Facing Old Obstacles: Report

Colombia's government has declared an ambitious plan to eradicate 100,000 hectares of coca crops by the end of the year, but an analysis of the program so far casts doubts on the ability of the government to prevent illegal armed groups from regenerating the vicious criminal circle.

Colombia Finally Gets Serious About Tackling the Urabeños

Colombia Finally Gets Serious About Tackling the Urabeños

The Colombian government has made some discrete changes to its hunt for the country's most wanted criminal, changes that may well tip the scales in what has, for the last two years, been a fruitless search.

Colombia's Largest-Ever Manhunt Hasn't Caught Its Top Target. Here's Why.

Colombia's Largest-Ever Manhunt Hasn't Caught Its Top Target. Here's Why.

Colombia's dense jungle on the Caribbean coast is the heartland of the Urabeños, one of the most powerful criminal organizations in the Americas. This is where its top leaders are hiding, and it is also where the government is rebooting its largest-ever police operation to try, once again, to force them out. But so far the massive effort has failed to achieve its main objective: capturing Colombia's most wanted criminal suspect.

Inside Colombia's Multimillion-Dollar Black Market Explosives Trade

Inside Colombia's Multimillion-Dollar Black Market Explosives Trade

Colombia's flourishing illegal gold mining business requires explosives, many of which are sourced illicitly. This essential yet overlooked trade has opened the door for powerful criminal bosses to forge a lucrative black market that involves a large cast of characters, including assassins, legal mining companies and even the Colombian army.

The mad scramble for criminal power in the aftermath of the demobilization of the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (AUC) is over. The Urabeños, or as they prefer to call themselves, the "Autodefensas Gaitanistas de Colombia," have won.