Having the cheapest gasoline in the world is nice, but there are downsides. Beside the huge fiscal losses, cheap gas creates big opportunity for those who want to make a quick buck. Fuel smuggling is a major problem in the Colombian-Venezuelan border, as well as in the East of the country.
After a shootout with Maracaibo’s city police, the bachaqueros went to the police’s headquarters with the body of one of their own. From that point, all hell broke loose. Many of the pimpineros are of Wayuu descent, and justify their actions by reference to their unwritten laws, which say that deaths must be paid for … in cash.
In the end, the Mayor of Maracaibo personally negotiated a truce and the victim’s family received some compensation. In other words, the Mayor paid off the gang that had just laid siege to her police station. ¡Que belleza, nuestra alcaldesa!