Investigation and Analysis of Organized Crime
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Extortion

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Mexico’s Cartels Fighting It Out for Control of Avocado Business

Four competing drug cartels are extorting avocado producers in Michoacán, Mexico, showing how the fruit is becoming an increasingly important source of illicit...
Colombia loan sharks have expanded across Latin America
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Colombia’s ‘Gota a Gota’ Loan Sharks Exploit Chile Market

A Colombian gang leader has been accused of operating a "gota a gota" loansharking network in Chile -- evidence that this extortion tactic continues to spread...
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Chinese Mafia Moving Beyond Extorting Argentina’s Supermarkets

A series of attacks and threats against Argentine merchants by Chinese criminal organizations in Buenos Aires reveal a possible expansion of the mafia’s criminal...
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Risks for Mexico’s Public Transport Workers Growing in 2019

Two public transport vehicles were robbed and then set ablaze in Mexico City due to the failure of workers to pay extortion fees, illustrating how public transport...
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Honduras Gangs Turn to Bus Workers to Collect Extortion Fees

Street gangs in Honduras are forcing transport workers to participate in extortion rackets, highlighting the vulnerability of a group already hit hard by such...
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El Salvador’s MS13: ‘We Trust in God and Nayib Bukele’

The online magazine Revista Factum interviewed a spokesperson for the Mara Salvatrucha (MS13) who spoke on behalf of the entire gang. In this...
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MS13 Grows Extortion Empire Through Honduras Mototaxi Fleet

The MS13 in Honduras has gone from shaking down motorcycle taxi drivers to owning fleets of the bikes and controlling the organizations that license them, showing...
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In Colombia, Loan Sharking is Now Just a Click Away

The longtime loan sharking tactic in Colombia known as “gota a gota,” or drop by drop, has entered the digital age -- as  criminal groups are now using mobile...
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Cartel Extortion Getting Worse for Businesses in Mexico City

Petty extortion has plagued business in Mexico City for years, but the recent killing of a local community leader angry at authorities’ inaction underscores the...
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ELN Still Receiving Payments from Companies in Colombia

The recent arrest of an Argentine businessman, accused of financing the ELN in Colombia between 2011 and 2015, has brought the ongoing ties between criminal groups...
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Ex-FARC Mafia Shaking Down Smugglers on Colombia-Ecuador Border

The hijacking of 11 vehicles loaded with contraband by ex-FARC Mafia along the border with Ecuador has revealed a new form of criminal financing for the former...
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In El Salvador, a Thin Line Between Community Policing and Vigilantism

Authorities in El Salvador are keen to expand a much-praised local policing model believed to have helped two rural communities tackle bloody gang control. But a...