How Mexican Drug Cartels Make Billions

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June 17, 2021, 2:43pm

In the Mexican War on Drugs, the word, “cartel” gets thrown around a lot.

The Sinaloa Cartel; The Gulf Cartel; La Familia; Los Zetas. Behind the names and the news stories, who are the organisations that have inflicted grotesque violence on Mexico, and made billions of dollars in the process?

How did they grow from small smuggling gangs to mighty empires – and then splinter into separate factions each fighting one another? And, crucially, what role did the War on Drugs itself play in making this violence inevitable?

In this episode of The War On Drugs, we look at the rise and rise of Mexico’s drug cartels.