Hezbollah Smuggling Weapons to Brazilian Criminal Gangs
The prominent Brazilian newspaper O Globo reported recently that the Iranian-backed Hezbollah terrorist group has links with Brazil’s largest criminal gang, First Capital Command (PCC).
The Brazilian government has tried to minimize the issue of Hezbollah activity in the region, according to the O Globo report on Nov. 9. But in the past eight years, Brazilian intelligence services “have gathered a lot of evidence that traffickers linked to the Lebanese Hezbollah, the ‘Party of God,’ ventured a Brazilian association with criminals,” the report noted.
The news report also stated that Brazil’s Federal Police indicated that Hezbollah groups are linked with criminal organizations that operate in Brazilian prisons, mainly in São Paulo. Police documents reveal that Hezbollah has been providing the Brazilian gang with weapons while also acting as intermediaries in the sale of explosives that the PCC stole from Parguay. In exchange, the PCC offers protection in Brazil’s prisons for inmates of Lebanese origin.
Reports of Hezbollah building a Western base in South America’s Tri-border area – the region divided by the borders of Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil – surfaced years ago. In 2007, NBC News and Telemundo uncovered details of an extensive smuggling network run by Hezbollah, through which large sums of money were funneled to terrorist leaders in the Middle East and for training camps. The Tri-border has been described by U.S. officials as the most important base for Hezbollah to finance its operations outside of Lebanon itself.
Founded in 1982, Hezbollah, a radical Shiite Muslim group, is considered to be one of the most active terrorist organizations in the world with a global terror network that has killed hundreds of innocent civilians through plane hijackings, suicide bombings, assassinations, weapons smuggling and rocket fire. It is the first organization in modern history that has perpetrated a suicide bombing attack.
In 1994 a Hezbollah suicide bomber, directed by the Iranian regime, detonated a car in front of the Jewish Community Center in the commercial area of Buenos Aires, killing 85 people and wounding 300. Hezbollah is also responsible for the assassination of American academic Malcolm Kerr in 1984, the assassination of French military attaché in Lebanon, Col. Christian Gouttiere in 1986, and an international court found evidence of Hezbollah’s role in the 2005 assassination of Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.
Hezbollah forces also planted two bombs on the Israeli side of the Lebanese border in the Har Dov region of the Golan Heights on Oct. 7, wounding two IDF soldiers who were bomb-disposal experts from the Combat Engineering Corps.