Panamanian Police Seize 1,300 Kilos of Cocaine
By Dialogo August 02, 2012
The Panamanian Police seized 1,367 kilos of cocaine in two operations in different locations in the country that also enabled the arrests of four people and the seizure of tens of thousands of dollars, police sources announced on July 30.
The primary seizure was made by the National Aeronaval Service (Senan) on a European-flagged sailboat named Menecee, where 846 kilos of cocaine were found.
This seizure took place near the coasts of the Palmilla River, on the Atlantic coast of Colón, the police announcement specified.
Two citizens of Honduran nationality, who were on the vessel with over 42,000 dollars, the origin of which they “were unable to justify,” were arrested, according to authorities.
In a second operation, authorities seized another 521 kilos of cocaine on La Arenera Beach, east of the capital.
The drugs “were found inside 26 bags that were allegedly offloaded at the location by a speedboat,” the police indicated.
In this operation, carried out on July 28, two other people were arrested, one of Panamanian nationality and the other of Colombian nationality.
In it, police also seized around 27,000 dollars and three passports in the names of Colombian citizens, believed to be used for this alleged illicit activity.
According to authorities, more than 15 tons of different drugs have been seized so far in 2012.
According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Panama ranks third in the region in drug seizures.
With 52 tons seized between 2010 and the beginning of 2011, Panama seized 8 percent of the total amount of drugs seized in the entire Western Hemisphere, behind Colombia, which seized 211 tons (30 percent of the total), and the United States, with 163 tons (equivalent to 24 percent of the total).