On June 6, the Paraguayan Navy, with the cooperation of the Paraguayan National Anti-Drug Secretariat (SENAD), seized 498 kilograms of marijuana, estimated to be worth about $150,000, while on patrol on the Paraná River in Ciudad del Este, Paraguay, the SENAD said in a press release.
“Blow to narcotrafficking,” the Paraguayan Navy said on its Instagram account. “The shipment was about to be sent to Brazil, but it was left behind when the criminals saw the control team,” the SENAD, for its part, said on its Facebook page.
During a river patrol, authorities spotted a boat with several people around, who fled as soon as they noticed the security forces. “Based on this suspicious action, we conducted an intense search in the area and found 21 large packages near this canoe […] containing 498 kilograms of pressed marijuana,” the Navy said.
Service members continued the search and found another vessel similar to the first one in the same area, which led authorities to assume that traffickers were going to refloat both vessels to send the shipment to Brazil, the Navy said on its statement.
With the support of the Specialized Unit against Narcorafficking of the Attorney General’s Office, the shipment of marijuana and the vessels seized were transferred to the Eastern Naval Base to carry out the necessary procedures.
“These activities are part of the direct fight against narcotrafficking and aim to prevent people and goods from entering the country illegally, in compliance with the Health Emergency Decree against the spread of COVID-19 in our country,” the Navy said.
“The seizures that result from our operations have a direct impact on the finances of crime, as well as on the drug market in our society. We continue to work for the people on a daily basis,” SENAD said on its Twitter account.
“From March to June, authorities seized more than 1.5 [metric] tons of pressed marijuana in several operations carried out in the Alto Paraná area,” Lieutenant Commander José María Aguiar Cristaldo, head of the Paraguayan Navy Social Communication office, told Diálogo. “We conducted these procedures with riverine, air, and land patrols that monitor the areas bordering Brazil and Argentina. The marijuana seized is estimated to be worth about $850,000 in neighboring countries, which means a significant loss for narcotrafficking.”