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Nov 10, 2017 06:13 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

In the biggest ever drugs bust, Colombia seizes cocaine worth over Rs 2,300 crore

With UN figures revealing an increase in country's cocaine production, Colombia's strongest ally, the US was forced to raise concerns over the increase in Coca cultivation

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In what is claimed to be the biggest ever drug bust, Colombian authorities have seized 12 tonnes of cocaine from an area near the Panama border.

The police seized cocaine that is estimated to worth over Rs 2,300 crore in the US market in a three-day operation that also saw some arrests being made. The cocaine was found to be stored underground on four farms that are situated in Antioquia province near the Panama border.

The drug bust, according to Colombia's President Juan Manuel Santos is the direct result of Colombia’s long-running fight against the drug trade. Santos, whose tenure will end next year, had been facing the heat after drug cartels had increased their influence in areas that were earlier under the control of the left wing rebels FARC.

“Thanks to a police operation with overseas intelligence, from friendly countries, the largest seizure in history was made,’’ Santos was quoted saying in a report by Reuters.

As per the statements made by Santos, the confiscated cocaine belongs to the ‘Gulf Clan’. A product of the civil war between government and FARC, the Gulf Clan is led by Dairo Antonio Usuga who has a bounty of over Rs 32 crore on him.

The bust also comes as a relief to Santos who was widely criticised for his failure in preventing criminal gangs from filling the void that was created after the FARC rebels signed a peace treaty. In response, Santos had pledged to send over 80,000 military and police personnel to former rebel-held areas to maintain law and order.

(With inputs from Reuters)
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