CRIMJUST focuses on combatting transnational organised crime, inter alia in relation to drug production and trafficking. The programme aims to enhance law enforcement and prosecution strategies, with a focus on disrupting illicit trafficking chains. By strengthening transnational investigative and prosecutorial networks, CRIMJUST is aligned with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, contributing to peace, justice, and strong institutions (SDG 16) and fostering multi-stakeholder partnerships (SDG 17) to address transnational organised crime. CRIMJUST acknowledges the devastating impact of cocaine production and trafficking in Latin America and the Caribbean, in traditional source countries like Colombia, Peru, and Bolivia, as well as in emerging production and transit countries, and the importance of addressing the issue through international cooperation.
The specialised technical training, which took place from 25 to 29 September in Colombia, played a crucial role in preparing responsible authorities to combat the ever-changing challenges of cocaine production and trafficking. Participants with both operational/interdiction and judicial profiles profited from this opportunity to strengthen their specific capacities in this field.
Following the premise “You can’t fight what you don’t know”, the training focused on various aspects of the illicit drug trade including cocaine cultivation, market dynamics and international control mechanisms. Participants had the opportunity to learn from experts in the field, visit experimental coca fields, and witness a practical demonstration of the processing of coca leaf to cocaine hydrochloride. This transmitted specific and up-to-date knowledge on chemical substances involved in the extraction and refining of cocaine, specialised infrastructure in the production of cocaine hydrochloride, and safe methods of disposal of drugs and chemicals. Moreover, economic aspects associated with the cocaine market, and current trends like the concentration of clandestine cocaine laboratories in certain zones and associated risks and threats for the region were addressed.
These activities contributed to a deepened understanding of the current dynamics of the illicit cocaine trade and provided officials with the tools and knowledge necessary to leverage the fight against illicit cocaine trafficking. The workshop ended with a CRIMJUST interregional case forum, where the participants shared their own investigative approaches to cocaine trafficking and discussed specific cases, challenges, and opportunities for international cooperation.
CRIMJUST’s specialised technical training aimed to empower law enforcement and prosecution authorities to address the multifaceted challenges of cocaine production and trafficking. By bringing together experts and officials from Latin America, the Caribbean, and Europe, the training promoted international cooperation and knowledge sharing to effectively disrupt the cocaine supply chain. This initiative aligns with the broader goals of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and plays a vital role in enhancing peace, justice, and strong institutions in the face of transnational organised crime.