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Cocaine trafficking between South America and Greece and methods of concealment

Forensic Research & Criminology International Journal
Andrew O’Hagan, Chalkia Paraskevi

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This research investigates the cocaine business between South America and Greece, and its trading methods. Cocaine trafficking is a complex political, social, cultural, and moral challenge that transcends national borders in size and importance. This problem as a phenomenon is global and multidimensional, as it involves, from the point of cultivation to the point of consumption, various people, social strata, huge economic interests, countries and even governments. The engagement of specialists from the maritime sector and individuals from the “higher social strata” who actively participate in the shipment and trafficking of cocaine to West Europe and Greece is highlighted. The cocaine industry in Greece is ‘structured’ by a network of interaction and collaboration involving governmental, commercial, and civil society players, according to information from a range of resources. The largest quantities of cocaine are produced in South American, and in particular in Colombia, Peru, and Bolivia, from where a large percentage of production is destined for European markets. The smuggling business into Europe takes place in large quantities, mainly by sea from coastal areas / ports of South American countries and the Caribbean Islands. Containers are the main transportation method, with quantities being hidden either within the legal cargo or in specially designed crypts. Sailing boats are also a time-honored method of smuggling drugs. The main points of entry of cocaine transported by sea from Latin America to Southern Europe, either directly or through West Africa, via the Mediterranean, is Spain, as well as France, Italy, Portugal, and Greece. Respectively, the cocaine entry points by sea in Northern Europe are mainly the Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany. Then the quantities are shipped to the rest of the European countries. For smaller quantities of cocaine, trafficking to Europe occurs by air from Brazil and other South American countries. Globally, Europe is a major drug market, maintained mainly by drugs smuggled from other parts of the world. Latin America is an important source of drugs entering Europe, which acts as a transit point for cocaine destined for other continents. Additional research is recommended regarding the financial, social, and political interests of the individuals involved in this industry in order to truly evaluate the dynamics of this unlawful trade.


drug trafficking, cocaine, globally, Greece, controlled drugs law enforcement