The explosive story of the illegal gold trade from South America, and the three Miami businessmen who got rich on it

In March of 2017, a team of FBI agents arrested Juan Granda, Samer Barrage, and Renato Rodriguez, or as they called themselves, “the three amigos.” The trio–first identified publicly by the authors of this book– had built a $3.6 billion dollar business in metals trading, mostly illegal Peruvian gold.

Their arrests and subsequent prosecution laid bare more than a corrupt finance firm, though. Instead, Dirty Gold lifts the veil on an illegal international business that is five times as lucrative as trafficking cocaine, and arguably more dangerous.

As the award-winning team of Miami Herald reporters show, illegal gold mines have become a haven for Latin American drug money. The gold is then sold to metals traders, and ultimately to Americans who want it in their jewelry, smartphones, and investment portfolios. By following the trail of these three traders, Dirty Gold leads us into a criminal underworld that has never before been in full view.

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“By tracking the complex web of money launderers, drug traffickers, and big money corporations who have exploited America’s demand for gold, these journalists have exposed a brutal trade. This is investigative journalism at its finest.”—JULIE K. BROWN, author of Perversion of Justice

“The best account I’ve ever read on Latin America’s massive illegal gold underworld. Fascinating, fast-paced… Dirty Gold reads like a thriller.”—TOBY MUSE, author of Kilo: Inside the Cocaine Cartels

“An astonishing read—full of corruption, greed, strong drink, and stronger language—that reveals the rotten heart of the global economy.”—OLIVER BULLOUGH, author of Moneyland

“Criss-crossing the world from glitzy Miami to the remote jungle lands of Peru, Dirty Gold exposes the dark underbelly of the illegal precious metals business.”—ANITA RAGHAVAN, author of The Billionaire’s Apprentice

“A fascinating story about one of the world’s biggest, and least talked about, illegal businesses. It reads like a thriller!”—ANDRES OPPENHEIMER, author of Saving the Americas and The Robots are Coming!

“This deeply reported book connects conquistadors to drug cartels to Miami real estate to the Peruvian Amazon—revealing a rotten, greed-fueled global gold trade.”—RACHEL SLADE, author of Into the Raging Sea

“Leaping from the glitz and glamor of South Beach to the muddy jungles of South America’s most impoverished corners, Dirty Gold is told with the brisk tension of a thriller. It reveals the true, very human cost of all that glitters.”—KEN BENSINGER, author of Red Card

“A fascinating deep dive into the most primal elements of human greed. Dirty Gold breaks new ground in more ways than one: as an expose on South America’s illicit gold trade, as an international cops and robbers caper, and as a rip roaring tale of avarice that reads like an upscale version of The Treasure of the Sierra Madre. Amazing. Do yourself a favor: get this book and read it.” —T.J. ENGLISH, New York Times–bestselling author of The Corporation and Havana Nocturne

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