U.S. arrests 28 in Honduras cocaine smuggling ring
By Dialogo May 11, 2012
WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S.A. – Authorities announced on May 10 the arrests of 28 members of a cocaine trafficking ring based near Washington who imported the stimulant drug from Honduras hidden in shoes and wood frames.
Between 2006 and May 2012, the group, described by U.S. officials as “a contingent of Honduran immigrants” living in northern Virginia, coordinated with suppliers in Honduras to fly cocaine north to the United States on a regular basis, the Justice Department said.
Members of the ring allegedly wired more than US$1 million to their suppliers in Honduras.
The smuggled narcotics were hidden with a host of non-contraband items such as shoes, trinkets and decorative wooden frames, according to U.S. officials.
“Through creativity and coordination, this tight network of Honduran immigrants allegedly distributed vast amounts of cocaine throughout northern Virginia and across the mid-Atlantic,” said Neil MacBride, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia. “Thanks to close partnerships among law enforcement, we were able to put together the case that led to today’s charges.”
[AFP, 11/05/2012; Justice.gov, 10/05/2012]