1 Day Training

Investigation into the ‘narco culture’ has revealed a number of criminal organizations utilizing magical rituals and ceremonies for protection from rival organizations and police. Religious practices from Africa and Latin America are being used to seek supernatural protection and guidance. Traditional rituals from religions such as Santeria, Palo Mayombe and Voodoo are being misappropriated by these criminal elements.

A similar pattern is developing among international human smuggling and trafficking rings. Federal authorities have discovered indigenous practices of Nigerian Juju, West African Voodoo and Latin Folk Magic being used to maintain control of organizations and keep victims of trafficking in silence.

Lastly, a number of drug smugglers and street-level drug dealers are using a number of Latin ‘folk saints’ such as Santa Muerte and Jesus Malverde to gain protection for criminal activities. Icons and amulets are being carried by members of these groups for magical protection from authorities.

The focus of this workshop is to provide law enforcement with an in-depth knowledge of Afro-Caribbean religions such as Santeria, Palo Mayombe, Haitian and Dominican Voodoo, and similar religious cultures. The practice of Mexican Curanderismo and Brujeria will be a focus in relation to the use of folk saints and folk practices. This workshop will prepare the officer to recognize and explain the symbols and artifacts found in the course of criminal investigations associated with Santeria, Palo Mayombe, and Voodoo. Officers will be trained to investigate and recognize Afro-Caribbean based rituals and ceremonies and their misappropriation by criminals involved with narcotics sales, gang violence, and various criminal activities.

About Instructor Tony Kail

Tony Kail is a cultural anthropologist and subject matter expert (SME) in Afro-Caribbean religions that has been researching and documenting African and esoteric religious cultures throughout the U.S. and Africa since 1990. He has conducted fieldwork among numerous Afro-Caribbean religious communities throughout North America and East Africa. As a former law enforcement officer, Tony Kail has provided training and consulting for state and federal agencies including the United States Capitol Police in Washington D.C., United States Army  and several state gang investigator associations. Tony Kail is the author of several books including Narco Cults: Understanding the Use of Afro-Caribbean and Mexican Religious Cultures in the Drug Wars (CRC Press, 2015); Magico-Religious Groups and Ritualistic Activities: A Guide for Frist Responders (CRC Press, 2008); and A Cop’s Guide to Occult Investigations (Paladin Press, 2003). Tony Kail’s books are listed as suggested reading on the F.B.I. list of suggested books on narcocults. Tony Kail  served as an instructor with the Nashville State Technical College Police Sciences Division. Tony Kail has written numerous articles about religious culture and security threat groups for Law and Order magazine, Police Quarterly and The Journal of Counterterrorism and Homeland Security. 

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Joe Keil