Colombia accepts to join CRIMJUST and supports the efforts to tackle drug trafficking

25 July 2016 - Colombia accepted the proposal to join CRIMJUST, a joint initiative implemented by UNODC, funded by the  European Union to curtail drug trafficking along the cocaine route.  

UNODC photoSouth America remains the main departure hub for cocaine to the rest of the world. The cocaine-producing countries, Bolivia , Colombia and Peru, serve as departure and transit countries for the export of cocaine to the rest of the region. According to the UNODC World Drug Report- 2016, "of the three main countries, Colombia has shown the strongest decrease in the total area under coca bush cultivation (-58 per cent) since the peak of 2000". 

The CRIMJUST project aims to strengthen criminal investigation and criminal justice cooperation along the cocaine route in Latin America and the Caribbean and West Africa (2016-2020). The action also seeks to support a selected group of countries in the region, primary and associated, in enhancing law enforcement capacities and institutional integrity.

In Latin America and the Caribbean, particularly in Colombia, powerful drug trafficking groups and the combination of internal armed conflict and the illicit drug trade have contributed to high levels of violence. Nevertheless, during the past few years, Colombia has developed more experience and good practices against drug trafficking, including: investigation of complex criminal networks and the development of national legislation to tackle organized crime cases.

With a substantial commitment to address challenges linked to cocaine trafficking, government officials from Colombia formally accepted the invitation to participate in the implementation of CRIMJUST. Colombia is expected to play a crucial role as a leader with a recognized competence and expertise in facilitating enhanced interregional cooperation and in providing capacity building support.

In that context, the project will focus on reinforcing efforts by UNODC to transfer good practices and lessons learned from one region to another fostering South-South cooperation.

Under the framework of the CRIMJUST project, UNODC and its partners (INTERPOL and TI) aim to assist Member States to enhance their capacity and integrity of criminal justice institutions to detect, investigate, prosecute and adjudicate illicit cocaine trafficking cases, to foster cooperation at the interregional level for effective action to tackle drug trafficking and related organized crime.

For more information:

European Union "Cocaine Route Programme"

- Transparency International