In all, there were more than 3,100 pounds of cocaine seized and more than $600 million in fines and forfeitures as a result of this operation. And BCCI, which was the seventh largest privately held bank in the world at that time, ultimately collapsed.
Mazur will likely get a lot of the credit, with an A-list Hollywood actor like Bryan Cranston playing him in the movie, but he's quick to point out that there were around 250 people involved in the operation.
One of the most disturbing discoveries in his undercover work was the connection between drug cartels and terrorism.
"There's some very clear evidence of the alliance between the Mexican and Colombian cartels with terrorist organizations — Hezbollah, Hamas, al-Qaida all have been documented … they recognize, the same way that the cartels do, that there's a massive amount of profit that's involved in this business."
There are two main drug routes, Mazur said: One that goes up through Mexico and other countries in Central America and into the U.S. and Canada, and the other, more lucrative route, which originates in Venezuela and goes into Europe. In Europe, he said, you can sell the same kilo of cocaine for 2.5 times what you could sell it for in the U.S.
"You have the movement of cash into Lebanon, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, other parts of the world, and then you have the drugs going up into Europe. This is a very lucrative route," Mazur said. "It's a route that relies very much on the longstanding smuggling route in West African nations and countries within the Middle East where there are factions loyal to Hezbollah."
The drug world controls very legitimate looking international businesses, like that anchovy plant, which provides an easy cover for terrorists to smuggle money and other things.
"It's bad enough that drugs and money, guns, human trafficking is occurring with those assets," Mazur explained. "But it doesn't take a lot of imagination to think that the day may come when terrorist organizations that want to move things that are far more dangerous will use those same smuggling routes to create death and destruction."