Project: Youth Violence and Organized Crime in Jamaica: Causes and Counter-Measures

The Institute for Criminal Justice and Security (ICJS) of the University of the West Indies  (UWI) proposes to characterize, over a period of twenty-four months, the nature of the relationship between youth gangs and organized crime in Jamaica. In addition, by exploring the environment that organized criminal enterprises create in socially excluded communities to recruit youth gangs, this study will provide insights into how the links between youth violence and organized crime potentially undermine the democratic governance of Jamaica, and lead to more violent political mobilization and conflict. In light of the burgeoning role that women play in organized crime and violence, the research will also characterize the motivations for, and extent/mechanisms of, their involvement.  Further, the ICJS will go beyond most research organizations by researching the solutions to youth gangs, organized crime and public insecurity, instead of only characterizing the problem. By investigating the efficacy of social interventions in targeted Jamaican communities, the ICJS aims to distil the most potent approaches to violence prevention and characterize the environment in which they are most effective. Evaluating social interventions aimed at violence reduction is crucial to the effectiveness, and sustainability of all local efforts. Continue reading

Americas: Successes in the war on drugs expose the policy’s limits

RARE good news in the bloody fight against narcotics gave drug warriors in the Americas reason to boast on June 22nd. First, Jamaican police arrested Christopher “Dudus” Coke, a gang leader wanted in the United States. The same day, the UN reported that the area used to cultivate coca leaf in the Andes fell by 5% last year.
Mr Coke’s unexpected capture was a coup for the Jamaican government. On May 17th Bruce Golding, the prime minister, authorised his extradition to America and launched a search for him. The effort caused 73 deaths in firefights between the security forces and his supporters, but found no trace of him. SEE MORE…

Jamaican Kingpin Caught Near Capital

A Month After the Bloody Siege of Tivoli Gardens, Police Arrest Accused Drug Lord Who Faces a U.S. Extradition Request

Jamaican authorities captured accused drug lord Christopher “Dudus” Coke at a checkpoint outside of Kingston, ending a monthlong manhunt that pitted residents against soldiers and left more than 70 civilians dead.
Mr. Coke, 41 years old, is wanted on drug- and arms-trafficking charges in a New York district court and faces a U.S. extradition request.
Police said at a news conference Tuesday that Mr. Coke was handed over to authorities by the Rev. Al Miller. The Rev. Miller said on a local radio program that he was taking Mr. Coke to the U.S. Embassy when his car was stopped at a checkpoint, possibly indicating that Mr. Coke had intended to give himself up to authorities. SEE MORE…

Jamaica: La amenaza narco / Editorial de El Colombiano

La orden de extradición contra un reconocido narcotraficante en Kingston desató una miniguerra civil que ya cobró la vida de 70 personas que se enfrentaron a la Fuerza Pública para evitar la captura. Una muestra no desconocida para Colombia del peligro que corren Centroamérica y el Caribe por cuenta del tráfico de drogas y de la necesidad de enfrentarlo entre todos.
Ahora es Jamaica, pero la foto del momento es bien conocida por muchos otros países, incluido Colombia: un narco se gana la simpatía de una buena parte de la sociedad haciendo de benefactor, corrompe algunas instituciones y después desafía al Estado, pues él se considera el Estado.
Eso es, literalmente, lo que viene sucediendo en Tivoli, un distrito de Kingston, capital de Jamaica, donde la orden de captura con fines de extradición de un reconocido narcotraficante ha provocado la muerte de no menos de 70 personas que se enfrentaron a las autoridades durante los operativos de búsqueda de Christopher Coke, Dudus , el señor de la coca. VER MÁS…

Jamaica: Another battle in an unwinnable war

The bloody hunt for a gang leader shows that the mafias’ roots in society and politics run deep
THE prime minister, Bruce Golding, had good reason to stall when the United States requested the extradition of Christopher “Dudus” Coke on drug and gun charges last August. The Shower Posse gang Mr Coke allegedly runs—so named for showering its foes with bullets—is based in Mr Golding’s own constituency in Tivoli Gardens, in the west of Kingston, Jamaica’s capital. The gang’s weapons are of military calibre and it has the loyalty of local residents. Any attempt to apprehend Mr Coke would surely cause widespread violence. SEE MORE…

Jamaica: Grown wild in Tivoli Gardens / Christopher Caldwell

There are only 2.8m people in Jamaica and last year 1,660 of them were murdered. That is more killings than were committed in the UK, which is 20 times Jamaica’s size. Annually, about one in every thousand Jamaican males meets a violent end. For Jamaican crime to reach the front pages of most of the world’s newspapers, as it did this week, requires mayhem of alarming dimensions.
Seventy-three people have been killed and 500 arrested since troops moved into the Tivoli Gardens neighbourhood of Kingston more than a week ago to
arrest alleged drugs kingpin Christopher “Dudus” Coke and deport him to stand trial in the US. The Jamaica Observer columnist Mark Wignall described the
events as “the most important crossroads in the modern history of our development”. But this is a crossroads in the history of globalisation, too.
Jamaica’s problems are shared with, and partly caused by, other countries, even if this week’s constitutional crisis belongs to Jamaica alone. At this
writing, Mr Coke has not been found. SEE MORE…

Jamaica: security forces storm ‘drugs lord’ stronghold

A state of emergency remains in place in parts of Kingston
Jamaican security forces are fighting with gunmen as the government attempts to take control of an alleged drug lord’s stronghold in the capital.
Gunfire erupted as troops and police stormed the Tivoli Gardens area to search for Christopher “Dudus” Coke, who is wanted in the US.
A soldier was killed. It follows two police deaths on Sunday.
Supporters of Mr Coke are fighting to stop his extradition to the US on drug and gun-running charges.
So far there is no indication that the security forces have been successful in tracking down their target in the warren-like slum.
Gunmen in the area are reported to be heavily armed. There are unconfirmed reports of civilian victims.  SEE MORE…

El narco que paralizó Jamaica

UNO DE LOS hombres más buscados del mundo, el presunto narcotraficante Christopher Coke, tiene a Jamaica sumergida en una ola de violencia durante los últimos días que ya ha cobrado la vida a más de 40 personas.
En 1969, en Jamaica, nacería un niño llamado Christopher Coke y hoy, 41 años después, es el terror de los organismos de seguridad de la isla.
De un barrio pobre de la capital, Kingston, surgió una mente siniestra que poco a poco y gracias al poder y al dinero que fue acumulando compró el pueblo y se camufló bajo un falso disfraz de Robin Hood.
Este capo del narcotráfico, según los organismos internacionales de seguridad, dirige un poderoso cartel que controla operaciones criminales no sólo en Jamaica sino en todo el Caribe, Estados Unidos e Inglaterra. VER MÁS….

Jamaica: Experts: Accused Jamaican drug lord akin to Robin Hood, Pablo Escobar

Christopher “Dudus” Coke, who controls the impoverished West Kingston enclaves now blockaded by gang members, is likened by experts to both Robin Hood and Pablo Escobar.

But comparisons to the hero of Sherwood Forest and the one-time Colombian kingpin are not mutually exclusive.

Coke, 41, rules via a combination of violence, corruption and philanthropy, experts say, and the unrest in the Jamaican capital this week is a result of competing interests: those who want him handed over for drug crimes versus those who consider him a benefactor.

“He lives in a poor area, and because of his sale of cocaine, he basically plays the Robin Hood role,” said Jamaican-born attorney David Rowe, a University of Miami adjunct professor with expertise in Jamaican extraditions.

Jamaicans, many of whom live in abject poverty in Kingston, are reluctant to help the government extradite Coke to the United States, experts say.

“They don’t know, if he’s extradited, who will be there for them. There are mothers wondering, ‘Who’s going to buy my child lunch?’ or ‘If I get sick, who’s going to pay my hospital bills?’ ” Rowe explained. SEE MORE…

Jamaica: Bloody Conflict Escalates

At least 26 people were said to be dead after a third day of violence in Kingston, Jamaica, as security forces assaulted the slum stronghold of armed

Christopher 'Dudus' Coke is wanted in the U.S

groups believed to be defending accused Jamaican drug lord Christopher “Dudus” Coke.

Mr. Coke, the son of one of Jamaica’s most influential gang leaders, is fighting extradition to the U.S., where he is wanted on drug and gun-trafficking charges.

One member of the security forces had been killed and seven injured in the confrontation that broke out following Prime Minister Bruce Golding’s decision to extradite Mr. Coke, according to local media reports. Mr. Golding, perhaps fearing violence, had wavered on the extradition, but issued a warrant for Mr. Coke’s arrest last week.

Soldiers were on guard in Kingston, Jamaica, Monday. Armed police and soldiers barged past barricades into the capital’s most violent slums, clashing with defenders of a gang leader sought by the U.S. SEE MORE…

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