Organized Crime | Wilson Center

Organized Crime

Previewing the OAS General Assembly: Citizen Security in the Americas

The Hon. José Miguel Insulza, Secretary General, Organization of American States; Adam Blackwell, Chief of Multidimensional Security, Organization of American States; Francisco Lloreda, Presidential Counselor for Citizen Security, Colombia; Aminta Granera, Chief of the National Police, Nicaragua (invited); Lynne Anne Williams, CARICOM Implementation Agency for Crime and Security (IMPACS)

Policing Democracy: Overcoming Obstacles to Citizen Security Reform in Latin America

Mark Ungar, Brooklyn College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York; Adriana Mejía-Hernández, Organization of American States

Latin America's crime rates are astonishing by any standard—the region's homicide rate is the world's highest. This crisis continually traps governments between the need for comprehensive reform and the public demand for immediate action, usually meaning iron-fisted police tactics harking back to the repressive pre-1980s dictatorships.

Crime and Violence in Central America: A Human Development Approach

Fifteen years following democratic transitions and the end of civil conflicts, Central America is experiencing more violence than ever.

Common Crime and Organized Crime in Latin American Cities: Commonalities and Differences

The Latin American Program held the conference, "Common Crime and Organized Crime in Latin American Cities: Commonalities and Differences," on May 19, 2010, to deepen the understanding of the connection between existing levels of delincuencia, or common crime, and the growing presence of organized crime in the region.

A Discussion of the Future of the OAS With Secretary General José Miguel Insulza

Following his re-election to a second five-year term as Secretary General of the Organization of American States, José Miguel Insulza addressed the significance the Organization holds today, what topics it should address, and what reforms could be undertaken at a May 11, 2010, seminar co-sponsored with the Inter-American Dialogue, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and the Brookings Institution.

Municipal Strategies of Crime Prevention

The Latin American Program held the conference, "Municipal Strategies of Crime Prevention," on December 10, 2009, to discuss municipal-level efforts to improve citizen security, reduce violent crime, and engage citizens and invigorate civil society participation.

Governance and Democratic Politics in Honduras

On December 8, 2009, the Latin American Program hosted a public forum "Governance and Democratic Politics in Honduras." The event sought to examine the status of democratic governance in Honduras in light of the June 28 coup d'état, November presidential elections, and prospects for reconciliation in the post-electoral period. The meeting was hosted by José Raúl Perales, Senior Program Associate in LAP, and featured presentations by Amb.

The Prevention of Youth Violence in Latin America: Lessons Learned and Future Challenges

In its 2008 survey of public opinion, the respected polling firm Latinobarómetro demonstrated the breadth of the problem. Asked about the most important issue facing their countries, citizens throughout Latin America cited crime (delincuencia) as the most important problem, followed by unemployment. Notably, the number of people citing crime as the most important problem has risen over the last decade.

Governance in Guatemala

The May 2009 murder of prominent Guatemalan lawyer Rodrigo Rosenberg and the release of a videotape he made prior to his death plunged Guatemala into a deep political and institutional crisis. In the video recorded prior to his death, Rosenberg accused Guatemalan President Álvaro Colom and his wife of murder and corruption, prompting calls for Colom's resignation as well as popular demonstrations in his support. The scandal brought into sharp relief broader issues of corruption, impunity, and public insecurity in Guatemala.

Andean Cocaine: The Making of a Global Drug

As a result of the recent surge in drug related violence in Mexico, drug policies in the United States and throughout the hemisphere have come under renewed scrutiny and debate. On a March trip to Mexico, U.S.