Drug trafficking threatens good governance and fuels corruption, creating a vicious cycle where criminal justice institutions falter and the drug trade grows. Ordinary people become caught up in violence, extortion and drug addiction. Money laundering from drugs reduces economic growth and reinforces income inequality.
Combatting drug trafficking and organised crime requires resilient and properly resourced criminal justice institutions that the public can trust. Civil society organisations can play a crucial role in constructively pressuring governments and institutions to be more transparent and accountable.
In a new report, Transparency International chapters in nine countries in Latin America and West Africa which are located along the so-called cocaine route assessed criminal justice institutions tasked with the investigation, prosecution and adjudication of organised crime cases to identify integrity, accountability and transparency gaps, and to advocate for policy reforms. The countries are Colombia, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama, Peru and Venezuela in Latin America, and Ghana and Nigeria in West Africa.
This report presents the main trends emerging from the national assessments and provides recommendations on priorities for reform.