Monthly Archives: April 2017

Italian Organised Crime, the MTTOs, the Caribbean and Mexico

Italian Organised Crime: The Caribbean and Mexico

The hegemony the Mexican TTOs exercise over the trafficking routes from South and Central America and the Caribbean to Europe whether directly or via Africa is illustrated potently by the following.

On March 10, 2017 the arrest in Mexico in the state of Tamaulipas of Giulio Perrone of the Camorra of Naples. Perrone was convicted in Italy for drug trafficking and sentenced to nearly 21 years in prison was on Italy’s ten most wanted list for 10 years was a fugitive in Mexico. Note the state he was arrested in and its significance to a specific Mexican trafficking organisation. And the fact that the Camorra of Naples is now visibly present as it’s no longer only the Ndrangheta. Whilst Perrone was in Mexico he was perfectly capable of conducting business on behalf of his clan in Naples.

On March 17, 2017 it was reported that Ivan Fornari was arrested in Playa del Carmen, Mexico as he was a fugitive from Italy having being sentenced to 7 years in prison for marijuana trafficking. Both cases indicate that Mexico is now a preferred destination point for fugitives from Italian justice of all ranks which attests to the depth of integration that exists between Italian and Mexican organised crime.

On April 10, 2017 it was reported that a former governor of Tamaulipas state, Mexico wanted on drug trafficking charges was arrested in Italy. Tomas Yarrington fled Mexico in response to the 2012 arrest warrant for aiding the Gulf and Zetas trafficking organisations in trafficking illicit drugs to the US. It was no coincidence that Perrone was arrested in Tamaulipas and Yarrington was arrested in Italy illustrating the depth of the organisational ties.

On January 10, 2017 EFE Rome reported that the Italian Police stated that they had dismantled a trafficking network that moved cocaine from Latin America to Europe under the control of the Morabito-Bruzzani-Palamara family of the Ndrangheta of Italy. This Ndrangheta family operated a network encompassing Italy, Colombia, Peru, the Dominican Republic and Spain. It is expected that this Ndrangheta family maintained an organisational presence throughout its pipeline as this is how they do business which includes the DR and the Caribbean.

The extent of the organisational alliances between the MTTOs and Italian organised crime in the 21st century is being gradually exposed at the level of the operational arms. What is necessary is knowledge of the operational alliances at the leadership, decision making levels and strategic action levels but this is very difficult to attain given the level of heavily enforced organisational discipline, the cellular structure of the organisation driven by the need to know principle and the acute limitations of politicised policing and prosecution in the quest for dramatic public cases in the shortest time frame possible.

The acute level of discipline maintained by the MTTOs, the Ndrangheta and the Camorra presents a formidable challenge to those seeking to understand the structures of these trafficking enterprises. What is even more formidable is to lay bare the structures created to service joint trafficking enterprises formed between the MTTOs and Italian organised crime which also encompass the affiliates of both the MTTOs and Italian organised crime in Latin America and in the Caribbean today. Caribbean transnational organised crime who are at the apex of indigenous Caribbean organised crime has proved to be effective and efficient affiliates of the MTTOs and Italian organised crime. A reality which falsifies the official discourse of denial which continues to insist that they are just “gangs” ever involved with “turf wars” and “gang banging” as they project that specific trees comprise a homogeneous, monolithic forest which is deliberate. If you deliberately refuse to see the reality, then you don’t have to deal with it as it doesn’t exist. The national security apparatuses of the Caribbean are not structured to engage with the transnational organised crime threat in fact it continues to be blind to the nature of the threat on the ground content only to mouth the discourse of the north Atlantic especially that of the US whilst they wring their hands, complain and drag their feet which in many instances but not all is a bid to mask their complicity with transnational organised crime.

Finally, on March 5, 2017 it was reported that Guy Philippe of Haiti was arrested under an extradition warrant filed by the US authorities. On March 6, 2017 Philippe was extradited to the US. In my 2006 book “Cocaine and Heroin Trafficking in the Caribbean Vol. 2” I stated that the militia that removed President Jean Bertrand Aristide of Haiti from power in February 2004 was bought and paid for by the illicit drug traffickers. Guy Philippe was one such prominent leader of this militia and the US indictment unsealed with Philippe’s arrest shows that at the time Philippe was organising the militia, then led it from the Dominican Republic into Haiti and set about the task of destroying the authority of the state and its elected president Philippe was involved in an illicit trafficking and money laundering enterprise. With the removal of Aristide in February 2004 the US indicted Philippe in 2005. So much for those who still insist without evidence that the US got rid of Aristide without clearly explaining the politics driving the militia that removed Aristide and its organic link to the illicit drug trade. At most what they can infer now is that Philippe served two masters but which one was organically vital to the life style of Guy Philippe in Haiti before and after 2004? Wanting to is not the same as having removed him that is why the MTTOs rule Haiti today with impunity! Why Philippe was handed over now? The answer lies in the politics of the trade in Haiti today.


Myths and Reality of Gangland: Persistent Questions on Enterprise

Myths and Reality of Gangland: Persistent questions on Enterprise!

The violence, carnage and terror in Enterprise is bad for business as you cannot maximise profit and generate wealth via illicit drug retail and wholesale markets situated in a war zone. More importantly you cannot aspire to became part of the business structure of the Mexican Transnational Trafficking Organisations (MTTOs) conducting business in a hot war zone because you don’t possess the order, discipline and business acumen MTTOs demand. Is the war in Enterprise the result of actions by an external force that is using the war to push the business enjoyed by this area since the 1970s into retail and wholesale points external of enterprise? Is the war in Enterprise a Muslim on Muslim war and others have moved in to exploit this weakness? Is it Muslimicide first and turf war second with non-Muslims?

The media says it’s a war for drug turf between Crown Trace and Bhagaloo Street for dominance but after continuous blood-letting there is no seizure of turf, no displacement of former turf holders and most importantly no single don has emerged as in the former days of a single don ensuring peace and order as the business flourished. Is it then a serious kill or be killed turf war or a paid for false war to disrupt and chase away the business from the oldest drug turf in this geographic area south of the Caroni bridge?

Why was Selwyn Robocop Alexis killed followed by the operation to erase from the landscape of Enterprise the male member of his family? If this is a turf war between Muslim and Rasta City where did Alexis and his family fit into this turf war to merit their extermination? The media repeatedly reports that Hamza killed Alexis which was a case of Muslimicide but what profit was there in this action? Why then are Muslim killing Muslims to what end? But I thought this was a Muslim vs Rasta City turf war? Why in the aftermath of continuous Muslimicide the turf war continues, no maximum don has emerged and peace is restored? So in Enterprise we have Muslimicide and a Rasta vs Muslim war being prosecuted at the same time whilst the once dominant illicit business is in the grips of recession. Where is the profit in this scenario? Is this war for war sake, killing for killing sake, where is the profit, the wealth generation? In light of the reality where are the resources coming from to purchase the material of war and maintain the fighting force especially in light of the business in recession? Who and where have profited and are profiting from the carnage unleashed in Enterprise? Elementary Watson!

What is abundantly clear is that the so called turf war of Enterprise is not being prosecuted as a hostile business takeover in the Game. Either all the reasons given in the public domain are describing a reality that don’t exist in Enterprise or the reality of Enterprise today is the product of an action informed by a strategy in the Game never used before in the drug markets of T&T. Then there is the possibility of human action devoid of long term vision that has now spun out of control. But this is not entirely supported by reality on the ground. Best of luck to those politicians who insist that the solution lies in militarisation of policing taking us back to the era of colonial policing after August 1962 is long gone. The solution is to deal with the Game and the lesson of Enterprise is that soon there will be others in Central Trinidad.

The old order of the illicit markets of Enterprise has been destroyed with anarchy presiding and no new order in sight. The old order created a Game that was organic to the community where it was known to exist but never presented an existential threat to the community. The ideal business model of the Game. That order was destroyed and what now exists is terror with impunity. Can the old order and the new terror driven anarchy exist and exert power over the community without the complicity of the state and its agencies? Elementary Watson!