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Cocaine Production


Nariño, Colombia: Ground Zero of the Cocaine Trade

The department of Nariño in southwest Colombia is the main coca-producing area in the country and in the world. It is a place scarred by poverty and years of armed...
Tumaco is Colombia's top cocaine producer

Drug Seizures in Tumaco Make the ‘Pacific Pearl’ Colombia’s Cocaine Capital

A huge percentage of Colombia's soaring cocaine production has apparently passed through a single municipality, Tumaco, over the first few months of year. What...
Honduran anti-narcotic agents with confiscated coca plants

Coca Plantation ‘Experiment’ in Honduras Raises Eyebrows

Authorities have located coca plantations in Honduras, a sign that the Central American nation could be evolving from its traditional role as a transportation...
The US Coast Guard had record seizures in 2015 and 2016, but basic technology is helping traffickers elude them

Basic Trafficker Technology Trumps Hi-Tech Authorities

Despite the use of advanced technology by authorities to combat drug smuggling to the United States, organized crime groups in Latin America are still using basic...
Colombian Police escort Washington Prado Álava.

Ecuador’s Alleged ‘Pablo Escobar’: from Boatman to Drug Lord

New details have emerged on the largely unknown operations of a recently-captured Ecuadorean drug trafficker, shedding light on the crucial, and often overlooked,...
President Nicolás Maduro in a recent military display

Dark Times in Venezuela Signal Bright Future for Organized Crime

Whatever happens following "the mother of all protests" in Venezuela on April 19, political uncertainty looks guaranteed and will be embraced by organized crime....
Colombian authorities arrested an Ecuadorian suspected of trafficking 250 metric tons of cocaine

Unknown Ecuadorean’s Arrest Sign of Low-Profile, High Volume Trafficking?

Colombia's arrest of a major Ecuadorean drug trafficker and the dismantling of his organization, unknown to the public until now, illustrates the drug trade's...
Chilean authorities dismantled a large cocaine processing lab

Dismantled Chile Cocaine Lab with Bolivia Ties Hints at Evolving Crime Dynamics

Chilean authorities have dismantled yet another cocaine lab, used by a group of Bolivians and Chileans to process the drug into its liquid form, suggesting that...
Colombia saw record coca production in 2016

Which Regions of Colombia Are Playing the Biggest Role in the Coca Boom?

InSight Crime takes a closer look at shifts in coca cultivation trends in 19 of Colombia's departments based on the most recent US estimates, shedding light on the...
Shining Path guerrillas killed three policemen on March 18

Recent Attack on Peru Police Shows Shining Path Still Strong

Guerrillas of Peru's Shining Path rebels recently killed three policemen in the country's main coca-producing region, a sign that the group intends to defend its...
Coca and cocaine production was a major theme in this week's Facebook Live conversation

Weekly InSight: Facebook Live on Coca Boom, Corruption and Cartels

In our March 16 Facebook Live videocast, InSight Crime Senior Investigators Deborah Bonello and Héctor Silva Ávalos, and Senior Editor Mike LaSusa discussed some...
Peru's latest coca count is higher than last year's

Is Peru’s Cocaine Production Rising Again?

New information on coca crops by Peru's top drug officials suggest that cultivations may be growing for the first time since 2011, and that cocaine production is...