Armed with National Geographic’s trademark inside access, Trafficked with Mariana van Zeller takes viewers on a journey inside the most dangerous black markets on the planet. We’re also big fans of investigative documentaries (as evident here) and this one is exactly that. Each investigation in the eight-part series embeds with Peabody and duPont Award-winning journalist Mariana van Zeller as she explores the complex and often violent inner workings of a smuggling network.
While she dives deeper and deeper into these underworlds, Mariana reveals — with characteristic boldness and empathy — that the people operating these trafficking rings are often a lot more like us than we realise. Trafficked with Mariana van Zeller premieres on National Geographic (DStv 181, StarSat 220) on Thursdays at 21:00 (CAT) on 21 January 2021.
“I couldn’t be more excited to share Trafficked with viewers around the world,” said Mariana van Zeller, who has spent the better part of the last 15 years reporting on the global underworld. “People do not realise that black markets are all around us, hidden in plain sight. And what fascinates me most is how normal, law-abiding people — people like you and me — get pulled into these criminal worlds.”
“Mariana shows remarkable courage and unique insights as she navigates these underworld networks, knowing exactly how to gain the trust of the people involved so that she can share what she learns with viewers. Her investigations and discoveries are truly astounding” said Evert van der Veer, Vice President, Media Networks, The Walt Disney Company Africa.
In one episode, Mariana uncovers a lethal supply chain of American firearms being smuggled into the hands of drug cartels and fueling record levels of gun violence in Mexico. A journey filled with jaw-dropping access to gunrunners, mules, cartel bosses and assassins takes an even more terrifying turn when the son of the world’s most notorious drug lord, El Chapo Guzman, is arrested and the cartel that Mariana infiltrates decides to violently revolt.
Additional episode topics include counterfeiting, cocaine, scams, steroids and much more. Tune in to watch on DSTV channel 181 or StarSat: 220 on DTH, 220 on DTT (249 on DTT in Uganda), Thursdays at 21:00 (CAT) on 21 January 2021.
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