Colombian Navy Seizes More than 2.6 Tons of Drugs
By Myriam Ortega/Diálogo November 25, 2020
In the last week of September, units of the Colombian Navy’s Pacific Naval Force seized more than 2.6 tons of drugs, including marijuana and cocaine, in three operations carried out in the Valle del Cauca department.
The first seizure took place in the Punta Ají area, where units of the Buenaventura Coast Guard Station detected a speedboat that attempted to evade security forces. “We had to carry out a maritime interdiction, and after a 10-minute chase, we found that the boat was manned by five Costa Ricans and one Colombian and that it was loaded with bags of marijuana,” Colombian Navy Lieutenant Commander Moisés Felipe Portilla Oliveros, commander of the Buenaventura Coast Guard Station, told Diálogo.
The units seized a total of 1,326 kilograms of marijuana.
“During the week, we had another interdiction in the Cajambre sector, where we saw the same modus operandi: a speedboat […] that was manned by two Costa Ricans and a Colombian,” Lt. Cmdr. Portilla said.
During the interdiction, the crew jettisoned the packages containing the drugs, the Navy reported in a statement. When agents carried out the inspection, they counted a total of 1,142 kg of marijuana and 150 kg of cocaine, the Navy said.
The third operation took place in Bahía Málaga, where members of the Pacific Naval Force conducting control and security procedures found eight bags floating in the water, the Navy reported. Inside, authorities found several packages containing 60 kg of cocaine hydrochloride.
These seizures occurred in the area of influence of the criminal group Estructura 30, which consists of dissidents of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, the Navy said. “At this moment, they need to start shipping all those narcotics that they were not able to ship due to the pandemic,” Lt. Cmdr. Portilla said.
In September 2020, the Buenaventura Coast Guard Station seized 1,546.48 kg of cocaine hydrochloride and 6,405.9 kg of marijuana, according to data from the station’s operations headquarters. With these new blows to narcotrafficking, the Pacific Naval Force has seized more than 33 tons of marijuana so far this year, the Navy said in a statement — the amount of cocaine seized during the same period was not specified.