The United States has a multi-million dollar reward program for drug lords | Bloomberg

Convicted drug kingpin Diego Leon Montoya Sanchez

Convicted drug kingpin Diego Leon Montoya Sanchez, center, in the custody of Colombian soldiers in 2007. Photographer: Mauricio Duenas/AFP via Getty Images

The rate at which traffickers have been crossing their bosses in exchange for wealth has increased significantly. And that is possibly due to the renewed emphasis on a little-known program of the State Department that has been handing out millions of dollars to informers for more than three decades. Many could take advantage of the temptation to become a billionaire overnight, which is what the Narcotics Rewards Program (NRP) is all about.

In fact, almost $ 32 million has been distributed to 33 people in the last five years. In some cases, some received up to $ 5 million, according to the Department of State’s Office of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs. Thanks to this program, it has been possible to arrest almost 70 “foreign major rapists” since its creation.

Last month it was announced that the reward for Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes, who is the reputed leader of the Jalisco Nueva Generación Cartel, had doubled to $ 10 million. The group is allegedly “responsible for the trafficking of many tons of cocaine, methamphetamine, and heroin with fentanyl to the United States,” says the State Department.


It is important to mention that cheap heroin and synthetic opiates have been flowing north to replace the pain pills that were once easily obtained, produced by pharmaceutical companies. Because of this, there is a national epidemic, in which overdoses have skyrocketed and life expectancy in the United States has decreased.

For their part, critics of the government’s rewards programs have made various warnings. One is that the huge cash rewards have increased the violence of the cartels. In addition to this, this has also encouraged corruption among United States police personnel.

Similarly, it has been said that the NRP is the darkest of several rewards programs of the State Department. The officials of the Department of State and the DEA have no direct contact with the informants. In addition, each NRP informant is identified by a code number and they have a file locked in a safe inside the US embassy in their country of origin.

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Source: Olivia Carville | Bloomberg

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