Real Drug Cartels Are Recruiting on GTA Online

It's all fun and games, until real drug cartels start using the drug cartel simulations to recruit new people. And… that's exactly what's happening.

Drug cartel gta online
Pablo would've loved GTA Online. | © Netflix, Rockstar

Drug cartels are using GTA Online as a recruitment tool for drug mules. Yup, I wish I was kidding, but I'm really not. A report from Forbes uncovered this fact, and Mexican police have already made claims about GTA Online serving as a recruitment tool one year ago. Now, a specific case tied to the game has been uncovered, and it gives the whole story the legitimacy it needs, so that this can maybe be stopped.

Drug Cartels Recruiting Drug Mules Via GTA Online

Alyssa Navarro was contacted by a cartel member while playing the game. The conversation then moved to Snap Chat, and… eventually she was arrested in a Jeep Cherokee with 60 kg of methamphetamine. Yeah.

Navarro was paid $2000 for each trip, plus she got to keep the vehicle, and, according to police reports, she thought she was transporting electronics – the drugs were only found in the fuel tank of the car. Now, I don't want to get into how naive you have to be that you're getting paid $2k plus a vehicle by a shady guy for transporting electronics, especially if you've been playing GTA, but hey…

Interestingly, though, GTA Online is not the only game being used as a recruitment tool: Free Fire has apparently also caught the eyes of the cartel's HR departments, and it's easy to see why. Young people playing video games are, stereotypically, not the most disciplined when it comes to their career or money-making. Since the world runs on money, though (and video games do too), they're much more likely to be seduced into a quick payday. Thinking about it that way, it's scary once you start wondering in what other ways video games are being misused to seduce gullible gamers into the wrong lifestyle.