Colombia Reports Destruction of Drug Labs and Capture of Criminals
By Yolima Dussán/Diálogo September 23, 2020
In the first two weeks of August 2020, Colombian authorities reported several operations resulting in considerable losses to criminals and to the finances of organized crime.
During a joint operation on August 15, between the Colombian Navy and the National Police, authorities captured 18 members of the criminal group Clan del Golfo, including alias Jhorman, accused of being the main leader of this criminal group. Alias Bebeto, in charge of coordinating extortion and hired killings, was neutralized as he tried to escape, said the Colombian Military Forces’ General Command (CGFM, in Spanish).
During another operation on August 6, the CGFM reported the destruction of six labs used to process coca paste base. The labs were located in different areas of the Guaviare and Meta departments, an enclave of dissidents of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia. Authorities destroyed 1,031 kg of solid and 3,467 liters of liquid chemical materials, enough to produce close to 310 kg of coca base paste monthly.
During a large operation on July 29, Colombian security forces captured 17 National Liberation Army (ELN, in Spanish) guerrillas who operated in Bolívar department. The National Police, the Army’s First Division, and the Office of the Attorney General executed the operation, which included more than 30 simultaneous raids in three municipalities, the police reported in a press release.
These criminals are accused of extortion, forced displacement, homicide, illicit trade of war materials, and drug trafficking and possession, the police said.
With these results, the ELN has lost key elements. The Colombian forces highlighted the importance of the operation since this group, already engaged in turf wars in the region with the Clan del Golfo, is accused of perpetrating the assassination of social leaders in the area.