It is well known that the majority of the cocaine that cocaine makes it to users’ noses by way of Central America. Recent reports show that Brazil–the longtime #2 cocaine consumer behind the United States– is becoming more of a player in the global cocaine game.
This weekend, a huge cocaine bust transpired in Jacarei, a city in Sao Paolo, Brazil’s most heavily populated and wealthiest state. Acting on a tip that a certain vehicle was being used to transport coke, Sao Paolo state police seized major weight. According to FOX News Latino, when the driver of the vehicle was stopped in Jacarei, officers found 25 coke tablets inside. The driver (who was arrested and charged with trafficking) told the authorities that he picked the blow up at a large shed in the city and led them to the building. There, investigators uncovered and seized 1.03 tons of the white, packed in 37 barrels.
Earlier this month, a woman was busted with two kilos of cocaine shipped from Brazil, at the Tan Son Nhat Airport in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam. She claimed to be importing a consignment of hundreds of small bird statues as gifts. However, customs agents found the two birds of blow hidden inside four hollowed out figurines. The haul is said to be worth a billion Vietnamese dong (VND), which is about $226,000 USD. (Unfortunately for the woman, in Vietnam, those caught smuggling 100 grams of heroin, or 300 grams of other drugs, face the death penalty.)
As the appetite for cocaine has decreased in the US, and Brazil has grown in population and affluence, cocaine distributors target Brazil more for business. The main supplier to Brazil is Bolivia, one of its neighbors. In fact, Brazil shares 5,000 miles of border with the world’s top three cocaine producers–Colombia, Peru and Bolivia–making it difficult for law enforcement to contain the influx, according to NPR.