The nation of Colombia has been among the top cocaine producers and exporters in the world (it was recently ousted from the top by Peru). Needless to say, there have been countless seizures of Colombian coke since the trade kicked off. Last week, the Colombian authorities made the largest single blow bust in the country’s history, in an operation against the infamous Clan Usuga.
Agents (aided by two Black Hawk helicopters) blitzed a banana plantation close to the northwestern coastal town of Turbo. In a cement covered, underground shelter the agents found close to eight metric tons of cocaine (17,500 pounds; 8,750 kilos) of Clan Usuga coke. According to the Huffington Post:
Nearly 1.5 tons of cocaine were already wrapped and “ready for export” to Central America. From there, the drugs could be smuggled into the U.S., Colombian Defense Minister Luis Carlos Villegas said on Sunday.
The total haul is said to be worth $240 million. During the nine hour operation, three members of Clan Usuga were taken into custody. In January, we reported on the seizure of two tons of Clan Usuga coke in a Cartegena parking lot. Clan Usuga and its leader “Otoniel” were described as:
Univision reported that the Otoniel and the Colombian Usuga Clan are the Sinaloa cartel’s the leading supplier of cocaine. Similar to El Chapo’s status before he was arrested, the feds in the United States and overseas are hot for Otoniel. Univision writes:
The head of the “Clan Usuga”, is wanted by authorities in Colombia and the United States, which offered a reward of five million dollars for his capture.
The FBI attributed to Dairo Usuga crimes drug trafficking, murder, extortion, forced displacement and illegal possession of firearms, among others. “Otoniel” is considered highly violent and network of influence reaches Brazil, Argentina, Peru, Spain and Honduras. Its headquarters is located in the region of Urabá, Colombia.
— Mindefensa Colombia (@mindefensa) May 15, 2016