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Cartels in Latin America ‘Have Gotten More Powerful’ — Expanded Beyond Drugs to Trafficking People

In an interview with CNBC on Tuesday, Gen. Laura Richardson, commander of the U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM), said transnational criminal organizations in Latin America are not only growing in power, but also expanding beyond drug trafficking to human trafficking and illegal activities. It said it was “diversifying its portfolio” into mining. , logging, fishing.

Mr Richardson said: [relevant remarks begin around 10:05] “Transnational criminal organizations, or TCOs as we call them, are becoming more powerful and diversifying their portfolios. That means they’re not just trafficking drugs; they’re human beings. It’s illegal mining, illegal logging, illegal fishing. And it generates about $300 billion a year in revenue. That’s why, together with our partner countries, we’re working as a team to identify this malicious activity. “We are committed to debunking, exposing, and putting an end to law enforcement. And again, to strengthen national security and protect our nations and the American homeland.”

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