After the imposition of Law 1008, “Trials often lasted five years or more before a sentence was declared.”[v] As a result, Bolivian prisons soon swelled with people detained on low-level drug charges. For example, “In one Cochabamba prison that receives prisoners from the Chapare, twenty times more prisoners entered the prison in 1994 than in 1987, the year before Law 1008 was passed.”[vi] At the peak of the drug war, over 90 percent of all inmates were prosecuted under Law 1008. [vii] Although law has since been reformed, [viii] the number of current inmates prosecuted by Law 1008 still hovers around 85 percent. [ix]
I will not be surprised if a private security firm, owned by a multinational corporation, steps in to offer a solution to this Bolivian problem. Notice how the drug war helps to funnel money to these corporations as well as to the arms manufacturers, and everything is of a piece.