February 24, 2024

Brighton Journal

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South America’s largest drug gang is already expanding to other continents

South America’s largest drug gang is already expanding to other continents
The First Capital Command expanded from Brazil across the Americas and had already begun its advance on other continents (DEF file)

Football matches in Brazil are very tense. This is doubly true when it takes place in prisons. In August 1993, a game in a São Paulo prison ended in horror. Eight prisoners attacked their opponents, killing at least two. Covered in blood, they herald the birth of a new gang: The First Capital Command (PCC) Thirty years later, the PCC is the largest gang in Latin America, with an estimated 40,000 life members and 60,000 “contractors”. It would become one of the largest criminal groups in the world. On November 6, a leaked report by Portuguese security services said the group had 1,000 associates in the capital, Lisbon. PCC goes global.

The band’s network of associates began in South America. A decade ago, the PCC partnered with some of the biggest drug traffickers. Cocaine of the world. Based in Bolivia Santa Cruz, these “super gangs” are dedicated to drug and money laundering syndicates. Local media say it sounds like Mercosur, the regional trade bloc. They christened it “Narcosur”. Maintains PCC relations with Aragua train Venezuela’s group dedicated to human trafficking.

But in recent years, the focus has been on strengthening ties with the PCC Europe. In 2021, 303 tonnes of cocaine were seized in the EU. The further you send, the higher the margins. Earlier, PCC bought coca in bulk in Bolivia for $1,500 per kilo, loaded it on a ship in a Brazilian port and sold it for $8,000 per kilo. By establishing a base in Europe, members can sell those kilos for more than $30,000.

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CCP members are believed to be in half a dozen European countries, including Britain. The cartel directs more than 50% of Brazil’s drug exports to the continent, according to Lincoln Caccia, a São Paulo organized crime prosecutor. He mainly works.The ‘Ndrangheta Italian, the largest mafia in Europe. The two unions have been cooperating for years. ‘Ndrangheta middlemen are regularly arrested in Brazil, where they do considerable business. In May, an investigation by the EU police agency Europol found that the ‘Ndrangheta sent CCP weapons from Pakistan. He also collaborates with Albanian and Serbian drug cartels.

Another part of the band’s expansion West Africa, one of the major transit areas of white matter. According to a recent report by the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime, a Switzerland-based think tank, the CCP has become one of the region’s leading traffickers. Moroccan cannabis may be behind a reverse route to Brazil.

According to Christian Acevedo, in Nigeria, PCC thugs walk the streets of Lagos and Abuja brazenly, according to the Brazilian Federal Police. “They control the neighborhoods there the same way they do in Sao Paulo,” he says, citing information from his Nigerian counterparts. The Nigerian Liaison also facilitated the band’s entry into South Africa. South Africa is a key shipping point for coca to the emerging markets of India and China.

Criminal influence is not limited to powerful friends or geographic access. Territorial and social control is also important. In it B.C.C. “They exercise a type of control that no other group has ever exercised except the Colombian FARC,” says Steven Dudley. Inside crime, a research medium. The gangs are a parallel state in Brazil’s favelas, ruling the lives of tens of thousands of people. In the 2000s he also ordered a reduction in urban violence, turning São Paulo, one of Brazil’s most dangerous cities, into a safer one. Still, the group will resort to extreme violence if its interests are threatened, Kakiya notes. In 2019 he ordered the transfer of 22 PCC leaders to maximum security prisons. As a result, the band blacklisted him. He is currently living under police protection. When interviewed, he warned that the call could be intercepted: its armored doors interfered with the signal.

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The last step in becoming a global mafia is to infiltrate the political and legal economy. CCP is starting to do that, Kakiya thinks. The Attorney General’s Office of São Paulo province investigated the mayors and councilors. He discovers that PCC is involved in everything from garbage collection and public transport to construction projects and hotels.

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