News Briefing-Week of 20 of August

  • Authorities in Mexico have made what is almost certainly the largest seizure of methamphetamine in the country’s history, approximately 50 metric tons, along with precursor chemicals and equipment in the western state of Sinaloa. This seizure suggests that growing US demand has encouraged Mexican crime groups to increase production.
  • In one of the largest drug busts of its kind, four men were stopped at Farnborough airport in Hampshire with half a tonne of cocaine in 15 suitcases after flying from Bogotá, Colombia. The men have, then, been jailed for trying to smuggle cocaine worth more than £41m.
  • US authorities have found a secret drug tunnel stretching from a former KFC in the state of Arizona to Mexico. The 600ft (180m) passageway was in the basement of an old restaurant in San Luis, leading under the border to a home in San Luis Rio Colorado.
  • Three separate studies conducted recently by the Thomson Reuters Foundation’s Wealth of Nations project, Global Financial Integrity and ENACT show that the trade in Colombian cocaine via West Africa and Afghan heroin via East Africa is soaring, with political elites and crime syndicates working hand in hand; and that tax avoidance by multinational companies, particularly in the extractive industries, is equivalent to 11.6% of trade lost to Sub-Saharan Africa.