March 1, 2021

Report on gold smuggling in the Amazon wins the Gabo Text Prize


Bogotá, Jan 21 (EFE) .- A report on the tentacles and conflicts of the smuggling of natural resources from the Amazon by an alliance of five media from Venezuela, Brazil, the United States and the Netherlands was awarded this Thursday with the Gabo Prize for journalism in the Text category.

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The collaborative work “Venezuela, or paradise two smugglers” was produced by Correo del Caroní and Runrun.es, both from Venezuela; From Correspondent (Holland), InfoAmazonia (Brazil) and Miami Herald (USA), the Gabo Foundation reported, in a virtual ceremony in which it awarded, as every year, the best of Ibero-American journalism.

The winning report “investigates mining conflicts, gold trafficking and illicit cash flows through data analysis and interviews with sources from state institutions, gold traffickers in the Caribbean, Venezuelan refugees who are used as gold carriers and actors involved in trade, “said the Foundation.

“It is a mixture of field work with an in-depth analysis of statistics to identify international smuggling routes, starting in Venezuela, and show how Colombia and the islands of the Dutch Caribbean are used as a springboard for minerals to reach their destinations: the United States, Europe and the Middle East, “the information added.

CONTINENTAL INVESTIGATION

The jury for the Gabo Text Award, made up of the writers Sergio Ramírez (Nicaragua) and Santiago Gamboa (Colombia), and the Spanish journalist and translator Pilar del Río, highlighted that it is an investigation “with a geographical and continental dimension, border “on gold mining in the Amazon and how it is traded clandestinely through Brazil, the Guyanas, Venezuela and Colombia.

“Throughout the journey, the report shows the human profile of one of the most important illegal businesses of today, and how corruption is something so organic that it opens all doors and silently crosses borders,” the jury considered.

The jury minutes also noted that the winner “is an extraordinarily well narrated piece, made with a lot of encouragement and that dazzles for its originality.”

“As an added value, it also offers a reading in several languages ​​that privileges the connections between Ibero-America and the Portuguese-speaking countries. A fascinating text that can be supported by itself but that, in addition, is accompanied by audiovisual content that makes the story even more powerful. “, says the minutes.

The award-winning team includes journalists Algimiro Montiel, Antonio María Delgado, Bram Ebus, Jay Weaver, Jim Wyss, Jorge Benezra, Kyra Gurney, Nicholas Nehamas, Pamela Kalkman, Stefano Wrobleski, Gustavo Faleiros, Lisseth Boon, María Ramírez Cabello, Nancy San Martín, Casey Frank, Maaike Goslinga, Marnix de Bruyne and Rosan Smits.

“It is a recognition that I love because (the illegal exploitation of gold) is a very serious problem that happens in Venezuela,” said Wrobleski, speaking on behalf of the winning team.

The other finalists in this category were “The invisible drug dealer: in the footsteps of Memo Fantasma”, published in Insight Crime by the British Jeremy McDermott who makes the profile of an alleged Colombian drug dealer, and “Hugo, story of a heart” by Pedro Simón, a journalist for the Spanish newspaper El Mundo, about a boy who was waiting for an organ transplant.

1,443 jobs were nominated for the eighth edition of the Gabo Awards in the categories of Text, Image, Coverage and Innovation.

The winners in each category receive 35 million Colombian pesos (about $ 10,050) and a copy of the sculpture “Gabriel”, by the Colombian artist Antonio Caro. EFE

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