Investigation and Analysis of Organized Crime

Red Command News

Turf Dispute Breaks North Brazil Gang Pact, Opening Door for PCC

Two of Brazil’s most important criminal groups have ended a three-year truce and are now fighting for control over a strategic drug trafficking route in the northern Amazon region. The broken alliance could provide a window for the country’s most powerful gang to seize greater control of the area's drug...

GameChangers 2017: Government and Gangs Battle for Brazil

A new war between Brazil’s two biggest crime groups has contributed to escalating violence across the country, which...

Arrest of Rio Drug Kingpin Unlikely to Break Gang Control

One of Rio’s most wanted drug kingpins has been arrested in a massive security operation, raising questions about...

Prison Massacre Charges Highlight Source of Brazil Security Crisis

Prosecutors in Brazil have charged more than 200 inmates in connection to one of the country’s bloodiest prison massacres in recent years, as the security situation on the...

Red Command Profile

Graffiti bearing the Red Command's initials

Red Command

The Red Command (Comando Vermelho) is Brazil’s oldest criminal group, created in a Rio de Janeiro prison in the 1970s as a self-protection group for prisoners. It started out with low-level crimes like muggings and bank robberies, but in the 1980s the group moved into the cocaine trade, working with Colombian drug cartels and taking on a social leadership role in many of Rio’s marginalized...