Colombian Navy Intercepts Semisubmersible with 2 Tons of Cocaine
By Myriam Ortega/Diálogo December 14, 2020
In late October, the Colombian Navy intercepted a semisubmersible with more than 2 tons of cocaine, the Colombian Military Forces’ General Command (CGFM, in Spanish) said in a press release. The operation, which units of the Tumaco Coast Guard Station carried out off the coast of Nariño department, will likely affect the finances of the criminal group United Guerrillas of the Pacific, dissidents of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia.
“Naval intelligence had been monitoring this [criminal] organization; the moment we found out that they were taking the vessel out, we coordinated with a Navy aircraft that began to conduct search flyovers,” Colombian Navy Rear Admiral Hernando Enrique Mattos Dager, commander of the 72nd Poseidon Task Force Against Narcotrafficking, told Diálogo. “We had a coast guard boat, and when the ship reported that it was initiating pursuit, another boat left from Tumaco to support the maneuver.”
The semisubmersible, manned by a Colombian, an Ecuadorean, and a Mexican national, carried 2,045 kilograms of cocaine hydrochloride and was heading for Mexico, the CGFM said. According to Rear Adm. Mattos, naval intelligence determined that the Jalisco New Generation Cartel would have received the drug.
The semisubmersible, its crew, and the drugs were transferred to Tumaco, where the detainees where handed over to the competent authorities for the alleged crimes of trafficking, manufacture, or possession of narcotics, and of construction, commercialization, and/or aggravated possession of semisubmersibles or submersibles, the Navy reported.
“To date [November 5] we’ve seized 31 semisubmersible vessels so far in 2020, 136 tons of cocaine hydrochloride, and more than 35 tons of marijuana,” Rear Adm. Mattos said. “These seizures were not [made] only by the Colombian Navy and our units, nor have all [the drugs] been seized on Colombian coasts. We also carry out international operations with our partner countries […]. We have a great partnership to combat narcotrafficking […]. It is an important synergy of the entire region to fight narcotrafficking.”