Mexico’s Sky-High Murder Rate Rises Again
This article originally appeared at InSight Crime. A new report on high-impact crimes in Mexico underscores that violence and insecurity continue to be grave problems, raising further questions about the country’s lack of effective strategies to combat growing violence. The report from Mexico’s National Citizens Observatory, the 2016 Incidences of High Impact Crimes in Mexico, is an annual... Read more
Higher-Quality U.S. Weed, Police Crackdown Spiked Homicides in Jamaica
This article originally appeared at InSight Crime. Jamaica’s homicide rate has risen steeply in 2017, in what is likely the symptom of a splintering underworld. Between January and June 10, 639 people were murdered in Jamaica, an average of four murders a day, police data revealed. This reportedly represents a... Read more
Mexico’s ‘Kingpin Strategy’ Took Out 107 of 122 Drug Lords in Five Years
This article originally appeared at InSight Crime. Recent boasting by government officials in Mexico about the country’s success in capturing criminal bosses has reopened a longstanding debate about the strategic goals of Mexico’s organized crime policies. The administration of Pres. Enrique Peña Nieto recently disclosed that during his five... Read more
America’s Caribbean Drug War Isn’t Making Much of a Dent
This article originally appeared at InSight Crime. The U.S.-backed anti-drug initiative Operation Martillo has been hammering away at drug traffic in Central American waters for over four years, but it is unclear how much of a dent its reported successes have made in organized crime. Operation Martillo (Spanish for... Read more
Watch the U.S. Coast Guard Take Down This Narco Sub
With pistols drawn, members of the U.S. Coast Guard approached an odd-looking vessel sitting in the blue waters of the Pacific Ocean. After pulling alongside, the Coast Guardsmen from the cutter USCGC Bertholf jumped aboard what turned out to be a drug-running submarine. During the bust on March 3, the Coast Guard seized... Read more
Report Shows Mexico’s Growing Importance in the Meth Trade
This article originally appeared at InSight Crime. A new report suggests Mexico‘s role in the production and trafficking of methamphetamine to the United States continues to grow, a reflection of how criminal groups throughout Latin America are diversifying their criminal portfolios to respond to market demands. According to a... Read more
Moral Ambiguity and the Mexican Drug War
Can evil deeds be made good by good intention? Sam Quinones’s book Dreamland weaves together several threads of the story of American opiate addiction and forces the reader to confront that question. When Purdue Pharma began heavily marketing OxyContin as a non-addictive solution to chronic pain in the 1990s,... Read more
Vulnerable Mexican Troops Lacked Body Armor
The marines are the best-equipped — and widely considered the most reliable — force within the Mexican military. As cartel violence metastasized, the marines emerged as the go-to force for taking down drug lords with daring helicopter raids. The marines also benefited from a perception that they’re less corruptible.... Read more
‘Sicario’ es un trepidante peliculón nihilista
Cuando el convoy estadounidense cruza la frontera, un policía saluda con la cabeza a través de la ventanilla. “Bienvenidos a Juárez”, dice. La agente del FBI Kate Macer mira hacia la ciudad. Varios cadáveres desnudos y mutilados cuelgan bajo un puente. “Lo que hacen es brillante”, dice el otro... Read more
‘Sicario’ Is a Nihilistic Thrill Ride
When the convoy of Americans crosses the border, an agent nods his head out the window. “Welcome to Juarez,” he says. FBI agent Kate Macer looks out at the city. Naked, mutilated corpses hang below a bridge. “It’s brilliant, what they do,” the male agent says. He explains that the... Read more

Matthew Gault

Contributing Editor

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