Colombia: Drug Trafficking Gang Associated with the Sinaloa Cartel Dismantled

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The Colombian and US authorities dismantle an organization that operated in La Guajira, in the extreme north of Colombia, and which, associated with the Sinaloa cartel, he had trafficked more than 90 tons of cocaine since 2021, the Colombian Police reported this Tuesday.

"According to the evidence, this organization would have been involved in more than 30 arrangements for the shipment of narcotics in the last two and a half years, destined for Central America and the United States, valued at 1.8 billion dollars," said the general director of the Police. National, General William René Salamanca Ramírez.

During "Operation New Horizon", led by the Police in coordination with the Colombian Navy, the Prosecutor's Office and US authorities, the alleged top leader of this organization, Edicto Segundo Castañeda Hernández, known as "Operation Nuevo Horizonte", was arrested in Uribia (La Guajira). The Condor".

This capo used Wayuunaiki - the language of the Wayuu indigenous people who live in that area - to communicate and remain unnoticed, but the Police were able to establish that he was running "a powerful criminal organization with tentacles with the Mexican Sinaloa cartel, led by Ismael 'El Mayo' Zambada García”, according to a statement.

The organization used rancherías -the villages where the Wayúus live- to collect the narcotics, which were transferred from Catatumbo, to the southeast following the border with Venezuela, towards Alta Guajira "using trails (roads) from Colombia and Venezuela and the waters of the Gulf of Coquivacoa, either through the use of 350 trucks or speedboats”.

They also had semi-submersibles and the motorboats with which they transported the drugs to the high seas, according to the police account, which they left in deep-draft ships that took them to Mexico and the United States.

According to the police, The organization sent up to eight tons of drugs each month to Honduras, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Mexico and, finally, the United States.

In addition to "El Cóndor", who has been charged with the crimes of trafficking, manufacture or possession of narcotics and conspiracy to commit an aggravated crime, another 17 alleged members who were arrested in Bogotá, Santa Marta, Barranquilla and La Guajira They dealt with the network, the financing or controlled the routes.

Also seized during the operation were 10 firearms, logistic material and 160 million pesos (about 38,500 dollars or 35,000 euros) in cash.

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