Brazil: Federal Police Cracks Down on Narcotrafficking
By Eduardo Szklarz/Diálogo July 02, 2020
The Brazilian Federal Police (PF, in Portuguese) has increased operations against narcotrafficking in different parts of Brazil in the last few weeks. On May 19, the PF launched Operation Alias to dismantle a criminal organization that specializes in international drug trafficking.
The organization operated from Guajará-Mirim city, Rondônia state, on the border with Bolivia, and had a divided and structured chain of command. Their members smuggled drugs from Bolivia and Peru, to then ship them to other Brazilian states. The leader used many fake documents to mislead police operations.
Agents served six arrest warrants and four search and seizure warrants in four cities of the northern and northeastern regions. One of the suspects is on the run in Peru.
“Members of the criminal group would receive drugs from Bolivian and Peruvian suppliers, hide them in trucks and cars, and ship them to consumer centers,” the PF said in a statement. Thanks to the investigations, police officers were able to prevent four shipments of cocaine hydrochloride, seizing about 150 kilograms in total.
The individuals arrested gave statements at police stations and were sent to state prisons. “They will be indicted for transnational drug trafficking, racketeering, and money laundering,” the PF informed.
On May 19, Federal Police and Paraná Civil Police officers seized about 800 kg of marijuana as part of Operation Horus. While patrolling Lake Itaipu, police officers saw a boat from Paraguay crossing over to the Brazilian side. As they approached it, the skipper took off and abandoned the boat in a clandestine region of Porto Britânia, the PF indicated.
During the searches, police officers confirmed that the boat carried what seemed to be marijuana. “They also found a white pickup truck, partially loaded with the same substance found inside the boat,” the PF said. “Local searches did not lead to the individuals responsible for the boat or the car.”
Authorities seized a total of 770 kg of marijuana and sent it to the Federal Police Station in Foz do Iguazu, in the Tri-border region, along with the boat and the pickup truck.
Two arrested for drug trafficking
On May 16, the PF arrested two individuals aboard an airplane with more than 130 kg of illicit drugs, at the Flores Airport, in Manaus, Amazonas state. Agents found 125 packets with 56 kg of cocaine and 74 kg of skunk weed (selectively bred cannabis strains) on the airplane. The airplane had flown in from the city of Tabatinga, also in Amazonas state.
Authorities took the occupants of the aircraft and their luggage to the Amazonas Federal Police Regional Office. “Both men — the pilot, 32, and the passenger, 21 — were arrested and charged with transnational drug trafficking and racketeering,” the PF said.