The Complete Organized Crime Database on the Americas
A rare communique issued by Paraguay's EPP guerrillas has labeled the country's administration a "narco-government," in an apparent public relations attempt to rebuff the president's aggressive pursuit of the rebel group.
Police in Bolivia have freed two children kidnapped by drug traffickers after their cocaine "mule" mother was arrested in Spain, in an example of a rarely reported but highly common form of extortion used by criminal groups across Latin America.
While Colombia registered a drop in kidnappings in 2013, an uptick in "express" kidnappings remains obscured by the statistics, and reflects a major shift in the country's crime dynamic.
Until recently, abductions in Haiti were rampant and almost always happened the same way: ski-mask-clad kidnappers would surround a house, force entry, ransack the place and leave with a vulnerable victim -- usually a woman, child or elderly person. The family would pay ransom, and if the victim was released alive, law enforcement would call it a success.
Authorities in Bolivia have arrested a group of kidnappers that hacked computers to gain information on victims and demanded exorbitant ransoms, an unusual case in a country not known for kidnapping or cyber crime.
A Venezuela police report asserted that 27 criminals were responsible for the majority of kidnappings in Caracas, a crime that is reaching epidemic proportions and contributing to the country's slide into chaos.
Mexico has created a new unit to combat rising kidnapping in the country, but the question remains of whether this body will tackle the crime more effectively than existing institutions have.
Colombian police reported that 292 cases of kidnapping were registered in 2013, of which 32 could be directly traced to the FARC, despite the rebel group's promise to cease the practice -- a government precondition for peace talks.
Four soldiers have been convicted of an "express" kidnapping in Venezuela, highlighting the participation of the security forces in the kidnapping boom Venezuela has experienced over the last decade.
The death of a 38-year-old man in a confrontation between criminals and police takes the number of murdered kidnap victims in Venezuela this year to 21, as kidnapping not only spreads rapidly throughout Venezuela but is also evolving.