Law enforcement officials in Ecuador rejected a recent report indicating that Mexican cartels have a presence there, in what is likely an attempt to preserve the country's image as a relatively safe nation, despite mounting evidence that the booming cocaine trade is fueling organized crime across the Andean region.
In our November 9 Facebook Live session, InSight Crime co-director Steven Dudley spoke with senior editor Mike LaSusa about our recent article examining questions surrounding Sean Penn and Kate del Castillo's 2015 meeting with Sinaloa Cartel leader Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán.
When Mexican authorities captured Sinaloa Cartel leader Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán in January 2016, they suggested that their success stemmed in part from an October 2015 meeting the kingpin held with Hollywood star Sean Penn and Mexican actress Kate del Castillo. Now, extensive reporting by InSight Crime combined with evidence presented in a new documentary film series has called into question details of various narratives surrounding these events.
Several recent government reports show that Mexico continues to struggle with combating money laundering, a longstanding problem exacerbated by a lack of political will and an overemphasis on militarized responses to crime.