British Frigate HMS Argyll Offloads 1,056 Kilograms of Cocaine

By Dialogo
December 02, 2014



The British frigate HMS Argyll recently offloaded 1,056 kilograms of cocaine it seized during two interdictions in November in the Caribbean Sea in support of Operation MARTILLO, a multinational mission to crack down on illicit drug trafficking routes in coastal waters along the Central American isthmus.

The ship offloaded 840 kilograms, which had a wholesale value of $27.9 million (USD), at Coast Guard Sector Key West, Florida on November 29. Three days earlier, it dropped off 216 kilograms worth $7.1 million (USD) in Mayagüez, Puerto Rico.

In one of the interdictions, the Argyll confiscated the 840 kilograms after being alerted to a suspicious vessel south of Haiti that was heading north. As the Argyll approached, the crew aboard the go-fast threw 29 bales overboard, prompting the Argyll’s crew to man smaller boats to make the interdiction. Argyll crew members captured four suspects. The bales later tested positive for cocaine.

In a separate incident, the Argyll and a U.S. Coast Guard Law Enforcement Detachment (LEDET) seized 216 kilograms of cocaine after they were alerted by a Dutch maritime patrol aircraft to a suspicious go-fast boat. Crews from the Argyll and the LEDET made the interdiction, resulting in the arrests of two suspects.

Operation MARTILLO combines the forces of 10 countries in the Americas – Belize, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Canada, and the United States – along with France, the Netherlands, Spain and the United Kingdom. They work together to combat international drug trafficking, enhance regional security, and promote peace, stability and prosperity throughout the Caribbean, Central and South America.

Colombian National Police dismantles narco-trafficking network


The Colombian National Police (PNC) recently seized 12.3 tons of marijuana and dismantled a narco-trafficking group linked to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) by conducting simultaneous raids in five departments and in the nation’s capital of Bogota.

The group’s alleged leader – a woman who worked as a masseuse and has been only identified by the aliases of “La Mona” and “Lorena” – was arrested during the operation, along with 10 other suspects, in the department of Cauca. In total, 35 alleged members of the network have been captured this year.

Police suspect La Mona of working with the FARC’s Manuel Cepeda Vargas front, which is active in the major marijuana-producing regions in the southwestern department of Cauca.

“They managed to dismantle an entire structure managing production, distribution and marketing,” said Maj. Gen. Jorge Hernando Nieto Rojas, director of public safety. “We reduced a large amount of drugs that were to contaminate the youth and the general public.”

U.S. citizen ‘El Charly’ allegedly leads Los Zetas faction


Joe Maria Guizar Valencia, a U.S. citizen, is the alleged leader of a Los Zetas faction in southern Mexico, according to U.S. law enforcement officials.

Guizar, who is also known as “El Charly” and “Z-43,” is allegedly responsible for transporting thousands of kilos of cocaine and methamphetamine into the United States. He is also suspected of killing an unspecified number of Guatemalan citizens in the course of directing cocaine shipments for Los Zetas from Guatemala into Mexico.

He allegedly rose to a leadership position in Los Zetas after two major victories by security forces against the organization’s leaders. Mexican Marines killed the longtime leader of the drug cartel, Heriberto Lazcano Lazcano, during a gun battle in the state of Coahuila in October 2012. Lazcano, one of the founders of the transnational criminal organization, was also known as “The Executioner,” “El Lazca,” and “Z-3.”

And in July, 2013, Mexican Marines captured The Executioner’s successor, Miguel Angel Treviño Morales, who is also known as “Z-40,” near the town of Nuevo Laredo.

Given the loss of those leaders, El Charly reportedly rose in the ranks of Los Zetas. The U.S. government is offering a $5 million reward for information leading to his capture.


The British frigate HMS Argyll recently offloaded 1,056 kilograms of cocaine it seized during two interdictions in November in the Caribbean Sea in support of Operation MARTILLO, a multinational mission to crack down on illicit drug trafficking routes in coastal waters along the Central American isthmus.

The ship offloaded 840 kilograms, which had a wholesale value of $27.9 million (USD), at Coast Guard Sector Key West, Florida on November 29. Three days earlier, it dropped off 216 kilograms worth $7.1 million (USD) in Mayagüez, Puerto Rico.

In one of the interdictions, the Argyll confiscated the 840 kilograms after being alerted to a suspicious vessel south of Haiti that was heading north. As the Argyll approached, the crew aboard the go-fast threw 29 bales overboard, prompting the Argyll’s crew to man smaller boats to make the interdiction. Argyll crew members captured four suspects. The bales later tested positive for cocaine.

In a separate incident, the Argyll and a U.S. Coast Guard Law Enforcement Detachment (LEDET) seized 216 kilograms of cocaine after they were alerted by a Dutch maritime patrol aircraft to a suspicious go-fast boat. Crews from the Argyll and the LEDET made the interdiction, resulting in the arrests of two suspects.

Operation MARTILLO combines the forces of 10 countries in the Americas – Belize, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Canada, and the United States – along with France, the Netherlands, Spain and the United Kingdom. They work together to combat international drug trafficking, enhance regional security, and promote peace, stability and prosperity throughout the Caribbean, Central and South America.

Colombian National Police dismantles narco-trafficking network


The Colombian National Police (PNC) recently seized 12.3 tons of marijuana and dismantled a narco-trafficking group linked to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) by conducting simultaneous raids in five departments and in the nation’s capital of Bogota.

The group’s alleged leader – a woman who worked as a masseuse and has been only identified by the aliases of “La Mona” and “Lorena” – was arrested during the operation, along with 10 other suspects, in the department of Cauca. In total, 35 alleged members of the network have been captured this year.

Police suspect La Mona of working with the FARC’s Manuel Cepeda Vargas front, which is active in the major marijuana-producing regions in the southwestern department of Cauca.

“They managed to dismantle an entire structure managing production, distribution and marketing,” said Maj. Gen. Jorge Hernando Nieto Rojas, director of public safety. “We reduced a large amount of drugs that were to contaminate the youth and the general public.”

U.S. citizen ‘El Charly’ allegedly leads Los Zetas faction


Joe Maria Guizar Valencia, a U.S. citizen, is the alleged leader of a Los Zetas faction in southern Mexico, according to U.S. law enforcement officials.

Guizar, who is also known as “El Charly” and “Z-43,” is allegedly responsible for transporting thousands of kilos of cocaine and methamphetamine into the United States. He is also suspected of killing an unspecified number of Guatemalan citizens in the course of directing cocaine shipments for Los Zetas from Guatemala into Mexico.

He allegedly rose to a leadership position in Los Zetas after two major victories by security forces against the organization’s leaders. Mexican Marines killed the longtime leader of the drug cartel, Heriberto Lazcano Lazcano, during a gun battle in the state of Coahuila in October 2012. Lazcano, one of the founders of the transnational criminal organization, was also known as “The Executioner,” “El Lazca,” and “Z-3.”

And in July, 2013, Mexican Marines captured The Executioner’s successor, Miguel Angel Treviño Morales, who is also known as “Z-40,” near the town of Nuevo Laredo.

Given the loss of those leaders, El Charly reportedly rose in the ranks of Los Zetas. The U.S. government is offering a $5 million reward for information leading to his capture.
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