facebook twitter RSS
HOT TOPICS: Alcoholism  Addiction  AA  Cocaine  Heroin

Will Columbian Cocaine Destroy Ecuador Too?

Crime skyrockets and justice begins to break down in another South American nation.

Image: 

Another nation becoming a victim of drug distribution.
Photo via ridingworld

By Dirk Hanson

06/30/11

| Share

Like a balloon squeezed at one end, the locus of the drug war is diffusing into other parts of Latin America, as Mexico and Columbia continue to turn communities into killing fields. The cost of business for narcotraficantes—paid for in executions and arrests and torture and kidnapping—is beginning to be too high in those countries. As we’ve demonstrated, Mexican drug traffickers have co-opted smaller gangs in Guatemala,  and then El Salvador. Farther south, pressure on Columbia has lately squeezed a chunk of the drug trade into Ecuador, as Chris Kraul of the LA Times reported from Quito. Police veterans in the capital city say that drugs are flooding the streets, and that judges are being threatened or paid off by incoming drug gangs. “Many of my colleagues are extremely discouraged and worried. But we’re fighting on,” one officer told Kraul. “We’re doing it for our children.”

Crime in Ecuador rose 15-50% in 2010, compared to 2009, and murders are up, too. Officials are estimating that as many as 200 tons of cocaine are now being trans-shipped through Ecuador. That’s about one-fourth of all the cocaine produced in Colombia and Peru combined. Drug mules get busted at the Quito international airport with depressing regularity, and cocaine paste floods in from Colombia as the government there continues to bust jungle labs. The world took brief note a year ago when a 70-foot submarine, capable of carrying 7 tons of cocaine, turned up in Ecuadorian waters. But nobody outside the country is notified when another judge lets a suspect go. As Kraul reports, a judge recently ordered that $36 million in assets be handed over to the wife of a man currently in a Miami jail on federal drug-trafficking charges. “We spent three years building a case,” said the Quito cop. “These things happen and no one complains or says anything. They’re too afraid.”

Rehabilitation Directories

Most Popular
The Rehab Review
Cliffside Malibu
 
 
 
 

The “beach-house-relaxed” Cliffside Malibu claims to provide an oasis for recovering addicts and alcoholics. And that’s just what you'll get—if you’ve got the cash.

Morningside Recovery
 
 
 
 

For a “rehab near the beach” experience that isn’t quite as costly as similar SoCal competitors, head to this Newport Beach treatment facility.

AToN Center
 
 
 
 

Whether you’re interested in the 12 Steps, SMART Recovery, or holistic treatments, this luxurious, appealing and commendable 4.5 star (our system doesn't yet show the 1/2 star) San Diego rehab has a program for you. 

Reflections
 
 
 
 

This exclusive Northern California rehab is all about client choice—as well as golf outings, Buddhist field trips and keeping up with the office.

Capo By The Sea
 
 
 
 

Capo By The Sea offers an executive rehab program complete with medical detox and a focus on dual-diagnosis issues, as well as an outpatient option in an environment that exudes the kind of beach house optimism one would expect from an Orange County recovery outfit.

Journey Malibu
 
 
 
 

Want many of the luxury amenities A-listers have come to expect—including an enormous backyard with a pool and patio, an herb garden, a volleyball net and a spectacular vista of the Santa Monica mountains—with a recovery program to match?

The Ultimate Guide to Rehab
 
 
 
 
 

What you need to know when choosing an addiction treatment center.

the fix tv