The Black Eagles

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Black Eagles
Participant in Colombian Armed Conflict
Aguilas Negras
Active 2006 - Present
Ideology Drug Trafficking
Leaders Victor Gonzalez Sierra
Originated as AUC

Black Eagles (Spanish: Águilas Negras) is a term describing a series of Colombian drug trafficking, right wing, counter-revolutionary, paramilitary organizations made up of new and preexisting paramilitary forces, who emerged from the failures of the demobilization process between 2004 and 2006, which aimed to disarm the United Self-Defense Units of Colombia (AUC).

These were first considered to be a third generation of paramilitary groups but there are Colombian military reports suggesting the Águilas Negras are intermediaries in the drug business between the guerrilla and drug cartels outside Colombia.[1]

As of 2007 they were reported as being active in the city of Barrancabermeja.[2]


The Black Eagles first appeared in the Norte de Santander Department in 2006.[3]

On October 18, 2006 President Álvaro Uribe openly ordered their detention.[4] The government also ordered the creation of a new Search Bloc against the Black Eagles and classified this organization as a gang of former paramilitaries.[5]

Las Águilas Negras are one of a number of groups that have formed following the demilitarisation of the AUC, and they are said to be closely linked with Los Urabeños.[6]


The Black Eagles are closely associated with drug cartels and are involved in drug trafficking activities, extortions, racketeering and kidnappings. They have also attacked guerrilla members and suspected sympathizers. One individual who has been accused of leading the Black Eagles is former AUC leader Vicente Castaño.[7]


According to Revista Semana, the new criminal organizations may have up to 4,000 members distributed into 22 identified groups in 200 municipalities and 22 of the 32 departments.[citation needed]

The upper ranks of the Aguilas Negras are made up of demobilized paramilitaries – either those who voluntarily opted out of the government peace process or those who were forcibly recruited. The lower levels of the group appear to consist of recruits dedicated to drug trafficking. The Aguilas Negras have built upon the criminal networks established by various paramilitary blocs throughout Colombia, but without adapting the same military, hierarchical structure.[citation needed]



  1. ^ (Spanish) Revista Cambio: Farc y las Águilas Negras se alían en negocios de narcotráfico en el sur de Bolívar[dead link]
  2. ^ Caleb Harris (3/12/2007). "Paramilitaries re-emerge in pockets of Colombia". Associated Press (USA Today). Retrieved 27 August 2012.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  3. ^ "¿Qué son las Águilas Negras?" (in Spanish). Retrieved 30 October 2012. 
  4. ^ (Spanish) Las Águilas negras, group formed by demobilized members of the United Self-Defense Forces are present in five regions El Accessed 20 August 2007.[dead link]
  5. ^ Captured nine presumed members of the Águilas Negras Colombian Army Accessed 20 August 2007.
  6. ^ Michael Deibert. "Amid Elections, Armed Groups Hold Colombian Town under the Gun". Inter Press Service. Retrieved 18 February 2013. 
  7. ^ Vicente Castaño would be behind 'Águilas Negras' El Pais Accessed 20 August 2007. (Spanish)[dead link]
  8. ^ 27 alleged members of 'Los Rastrojos' gang arrested Colombia Reports, 24 November 2010
  9. ^ Romero, Simon (3 March 2011). "In Colombia, New Gold Rush Fuels Old Conflict". The New York Times. 
  10. ^ “New” paramilitaries, all over the map Plan Colombia and Beyond, 18 July 2007[dead link]

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