Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Pablo Escobar’s hippopotamuses

At his zenith in the 1990s Pablo Escobar’s vast underworld syndicate built upon the insatiable appetite for cocaine made him one of the wealthiest criminals in history. With income peaking at more than $30 billion, the kingpin spent lavishly on a sprawling estate. The excesses of Hacienda NĂ¡poles included a zoo stocked with exotic animals transported from around the world. Relocation isn’t simple for the largest occupants of Escobar’s zoo: hippopotamuses, herbivores that are placid in appearance but several thousand pounds, territorial and dangerous.
Four original hippo inhabitants of Escobar’s zoo have gone rogue and multiplied to more than 40 animals — but the count could be 50 … or even 60. No one knows for sure.

Spain detains 10 after seizing 900 kilos of cocaine

Spanish Civil Guards captured more than 900 kilos of cocaine, and detained 10 amid an operation in the port city of Algeciras. The drugs had come from South-America hidden in a cargo of fruit.
Spain made its largest cocaine bust in 18 years in December after over 5,800 kgs of the drug were discovered in a container ship travelling from Medellin. The ship also stopped in the southern port of Algeciras.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Joseph 'Joe' Pirrello - Australia's Largest Cocaine Trafficker

Fisherman Joseph 'Joe' Pirrello, 64, pleaded guilty to masterminding one of Australia's biggest cocaine smuggling syndicates after he was caught by police surveillance. A two-year investigation led to police catching the group on Christmas Day 2016 importing 500 kg of cocaine at Brooklyn, on Sydney's upper north shore.

Seven members from the 17-man syndicate have pleaded guilty to being involved in the operation, which led to the seizure of 1.1 tonnes of cocaine and 32kgs of heroin worth $370 million. Pirrello was found to be the common link between the 17 members, after more than 100 meetings between them were surveilled by police.

Facebook accounts revealed lavish lifestyles of the cocaine smuggling ring

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Raid reveals scores of fake Mexican cops on town’s police force

A raid at a local police department in the state of Puebla turned up 113 fake cops — out of a force of 185. They all face charges of impersonating a police officer.

The state government took over policing duties in the town, San Martin Texmelucan, which has seen a recent spike in violence and dismembered bodies.
The crooked cops paid bribes in order to get their badges. Some 'real' officers were arrested for charging up to 5,000 pesos ($260) to allow their shady new colleagues to avoid vetting and background checks. Puebla has the highest number of illegal pipeline taps used by gangs to steal diesel and gas.

East Baltimore gang boss sentenced to life for ordering murder of police informant

Gerald "Geezy" Johnson, 35, was sentenced to life in prison without parole for ruling over a branch of the Black Guerrilla Family street gang and ordering the execution of a police informant. He showed no emotion as a federal judge handed down the harshest possible penalty. The gang committed seven murders, shootings and more than 10 armed robberies while selling drugs. Their reign lasted over a decade.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Canada should heed warnings about MS-13 gang

Canada’s organized crime intelligence gathering unit has flagged police about the possibility of violent MS-13 gang members flooding into Canada thanks to porous border points. Experts predict MS-13 will infiltrate schools and participate in drug and human trafficking as well as be involved in the illegal gun trade.
Criminal Intelligence Service Canada said an “influx of Salvadoran migrants is expected throughout 2018 and 2019 requesting asylum in response to the removal of their Temporary Protected Status (TPS) in the United States” and that “MS-13 members will likely exploit the migration of Salvadorians to Canada to set up new cells, most likely in the Greater Toronto Area, Montreal and Vancouver.”

Friday, May 18, 2018

Malaysia: Bags of cash, jewellery, loot, seized from Najib Razak's properties

Handbags stuffed with cash, jewellery items and hundreds of expensive purses were among the items seized from homes owned by former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak's family, during police raids in Kuala Lumpur.
Investigators took boxes of Hermes Birkin bags from one property and loaded them into five police trucks. Hermes bags cost between tens of thousands up to $200k each.

Ex-first lady Rosmah Mansor is a divisive figure in Malaysia.
Police also seized at least 72 bags filled jewellery, watches as well as cash. Najib Razak is prevented by the new government from leaving the country, and is being investigated by the new government over a corruption scandal at the state-owned investment fund, 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), from which officials are alleged to have stolen more than $4.5bn.

High levels of fentanyl — and deceit — in Vancouver street-drug supply

The B.C. Centre on Substance Use says fentanyl cut with caffeine and a sugar substitute is being sold as heroin on Vancouver's streets. Testing showed that heroin was present in just 13% of samples brought in by people who thought they had bought the drug. Overall, 61% of the substances tested at two supervised consumption sites didn't contain any of the drug that people had expected. Experts say the heroin supply has largely been supplanted. Fentanyl was found to be present in 88% of all the opioid samples submitted for testing.
See ----->http://gangstersoutt.blogspot.ca/2018/05/bc-overdose-deaths-jump-again-fentanyl.html

Two high ranking members of the Bandidos found guilty

Jurors in San Antonio convicted Bandidos President Jeffrey Fay Pike and Vice President Xavier Portillo Thursday on federal racketeering related to multiple murders, attempted murders, assaults, extortion and drug trafficking charges. They are facing up to life in federal prison.

Among the charges of which Pike and Portillo were convicted for was the orchestration of the 2006 murder of Anthony Benesh of Austin.
Pike and Portillo ordered other Bandidos members to murder Benesh, who was attempting to start a Texas Chapter of the Hell’s Angels in Austin at the time. In March of 2017, four members of the Bandidos motorcycle organization were indicted by a federal grand jury in connection to Benesh's murder.
See ----->http://gangstersoutt.blogspot.ca/2017/09/4-banditos-plead-guilty-in-death-of-ha.html
See ----->http://gangstersoutt.blogspot.ca/2017/03/bandidos-indicted-in-racketeering-case.html

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Ecstasy and cocaine getting stronger

Ecstasy pills are becoming stronger and cocaine sold on the streets is more pure, according to a new report. Tests were carried out on 12,000 drug samples in 2017. The researchers found the amount of MDMA – the active ingredient – in ecstasy pills had gone up from an average 120 milligrams in 2013 to 167 milligrams last year.
While it's difficult to say why ecstasy pills have become stronger, the cheapness of the drug is likely the reason. It costs peanuts, so producers are less likely to worry about how much they use. When it comes to cocaine, in 2014, just 59% of the powder was made up of the actual drug, but this rose to an average of 68% last year.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

California police detective arrested after lying about his Mexican Mafia, crime connections

Glendale police detective John Saro Balian, 45, is accused of lying to federal agents who were investigating his connections to the Mexican Mafia and Armenian organized crime.

Balian was charged in a 47-page criminal complaint with making false statements to investigators during interviews last year. Balian repeatedly made false statements and misrepresentations about his links to criminal figures.
The complaint accuses Balian of lying to mislead investigators about his relationship with Jose Loza, a Mexican Mafia member and “shot-caller” of the Canta Ranas street gang, which is facing federal racketeering charges – even though at the time, “Balian was communicating with Loza via a burner cell phone to discuss jointly undertaken criminal activities.”

Balian is suspected of lying about accepting money to find people who may have been associated with a burglary at the offices of a convicted felon who later became an informant.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Australia's Cocaine Armada: 'blow boats'

Cocaine smugglers have unleashed a fleet of 'blow boats' towards Australia from tropical islands in the south Pacific. The Federal police have revealed that 3.3 tonnes of drugs were seized from private yachts since December 2016. The seizures involved four major stings involving French or Pacific Islands.

This yacht was found marooned on a deserted tropical island in the south Pacific in 2012. Stashed on board was more than 200kg of cocaine and a decomposed body
There is a massive payoff for smugglers looking to transport cocaine into Australia, which has one of the highest prices per gram in the world.

Fentanyl landing in California

Fentanyl is increasingly showing up in drugs in California. Although California has avoided the worst of the opioid epidemic, the drug market is dominated by stimulants — the very drugs that have started to be mixed with fentanyl. California has the seventh lowest drug-overdose death rate in the nation, partly due to the type of heroin sold.
Black tar heroin is sold west of the Mississippi. In the East it's a white powder. Black tar heroin is harder to mix with fentanyl so less likely to cause overdoses and deaths, but that advantage could fade. In the last year in Southern California federal agents have repeatedly made seizures of cocaine with fentanyl, methamphetamine with fentanyl and ketamine with fentanyl.