Ecuador Seizes 1.3 Tons of Cocaine in Fruit Going to Belgium and Spain

By Dialogo
April 15, 2011

Ecuador seized 1.3 tons of cocaine hidden in pineapples and bananas that were to be sent to Belgium and Spain, the head of the Antinarcotics Police, Col. Edmundo Mera, announced on 12 April.

The largest part of the shipment, 1,021 kg, was camouflaged in pineapples intended for export and had Belgium as its destination, Col. Mera added.

The drugs, which were going to be shipped from the port of Guayaquil (in southwestern Ecuador), were discovered by drug-sniffing dogs, the officer indicated.
“It’s believed to be a job with Colombians behind it,” said Mera, who reported the arrest of four individuals whose nationalities he did not specify.

In November, 963 kg of cocaine camouflaged in pineapples were confiscated in an operation in which eight Colombians were detained in the city of Santo Domingo de los Colorados (130 km west of Quito).

The officer added that anti-narcotics agents found another 289 kg of cocaine hidden among boxes of bananas intended for export, also at a port in the Guayaquil region, with Spain as their destination.

On 8 April, Interior Minister Alfredo Vera indicated that Ecuador seized nine tons of drugs in the first quarter of 2011, compared to a record-setting 68 tons in all of 2009 (including 64 tons of cocaine) and 18 tons in 2010.