Cartel Queens: The Untold Stories of Latin America’s Female Drug Bosses
Nicknamed “Queen of the South,” Marllory Chacon Rossell was responsible for shipping thousands of kilos of cocaine per month from Guatemala to Mexico and the United States. U.S. authorities identified Marllory Chacon Rossell as Central America’s most prolific drug trafficker. She is one of several women who have led ruthless drug networks in Latin America. Vice World News Senior Editor Deborah Bonello details how women have become some of the most dangerous and respected crime bosses.
Deborah Bonello has been the bureau chief for Vice World News Latin America since August 2020. She has been based in the region, from Mexico City, since 2007 and reported on organized crime extensively, from covering criminal syndicates and markets, particularly the drug trade, as well as the violence and culture connected to the crime world. Before joining VICE full time, Deborah was a contributor to the Guardian, the Los Angeles Times, the BBC, the Financial Times, the Telegraph and others. She also worked as a senior investigator and project manager for the InSight Crime think tank, which is dedicated to studying organized crime in the Americas. As a female reporter focused on a topic overwhelmingly covered by male journalists, she brings a very rare, gendered perspective to coverage of organized crime. From the rise of the female protagonists that she follows, to their experiences at the hands of the justice system, her work adds a new hue to an industry whose history has largely been written by men.