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Drug trafficking has become an increasingly growing problem in the world today. Illegal drug trade is a worldwide black market consisting of production, distribution, packaging, and sale of illegal substances. Although today’s war on drugs is a modern phenomenon, drug problems have been a consistent problem throughout modern history. The market for illegal drugs expands to every corner on the planet, the estimated global drug trade value is worth $321 billion. Drug empires have been operated like fortune 500 companies with most of the drugs being produced in Mexico, Colombia and other countries within South America. Drug trafficking is one of the largest global issues being fought against by many parts of the world. It is indeed an international crisis and it does not have a black and white solution as to tackling the issue. Because of the high price tags, it has ruined major economies. This is just one of the many effects that it has.

Colombia has gained a negative reputation all over the world, often being associated with illegal drug trade in which a large population of Colombian citizens participate in. Colombia has had a strong influence and has played a large part in the trade of Marijuana and Cocaine. At one time the Medellin and Cali cartels had a huge control over the Andean region’s, being in charge of 75 to 80% of the region’s cocaine, which in the 1980s earned between $2 and $4 billion dollars annually. As part of doing business, the Medellin cartel was naturally involved in violence and crime that extended beyond drug smuggling.The cartels used the wealth earned from the illegal trade to organize private militaries and purchase weapons as well as to impede the Colombian justice system by attempting to bribe, scare, and terrorize the political system. The exact numbers of murders carried out by Medellin Cartel members or on their orders is unknown, though some experts put the number at somewhere around 4,000. After the destruction of both the Cali and Medellin cartels, the cocaine business began to breakdown. Younger lieutenants realized that the large organizations had been more vulnerable to attack by US and Colombian authorities. They formed smaller, more controllable groups.every group had a small task, One group simply smuggles the drugs from Colombia to Mexico. Another group controls the jungle labs. Yet another deals with transportation of coca base from the fields to the labs. There are well known links between the Colombian Marxists guerilla groups and the cocaine trade. Guerillas protect the fields and the labs in remote zones of Colombia in exchange for a large tax that the traffickers pay to the organization. In turn, the Colombian right wing paramilitary groups are also thought to control both fields, labs and some of the smuggling routes. This situation has been disastrous for Colombia, both sides in an on going civil war are able to reap huge profits from the drug industry which are then turned into guns for further fighting.The DEA and the colombian national police believe there are more than 300 active drug smuggling organizations in Colombia today. Cocaine is shipped to every industrialized nation in the world and profits remain incredibly high.

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