Illicit Networks: the systemic risk in Latin America

A wave of corruption scandals has gripped Latin America over the past year. From Argentina and Brazil, to Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras, rackets involving state actors, the judiciary, business and organized crime have caused internal unrest and caught international attention.

Published in a special edition of PRISM, the journal of the Center for Complex Operations (part of the United States National Defense University), this article argues that in order to understand these dynamics it is crucial to look more closely at two interconnected realities characterizing many Latin American countries: first, the existence of criminalized areas that are beyond formal state control; and second, the presence of illicit networks within the state.

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