Successful searches are teamwork
Global large-scale operation against cocaine cartels
Spectacular finds of cocaine, large-scale raids, mass arrests – without the close cooperation of international investigators, nobody can stop the powerful drug cartels.
Dario Antonio Úsuga (50) aka “Otoniel” was finally arrested on October 23, 2021. When the cartel boss was arrested, 500 soldiers, 150 police officers and 22 helicopters were deployed.
Myrtle MuellerOutside Reporter News
The indictment only gives an idea of the extent of the crime. Drug lord Alvaro H.* (47) will be before the Basel-Stadt criminal court from Monday. The Colombian with a Spanish passport and C-ID is accused of crimes against the Narcotics Act and money laundering. It’s about drug trafficking in the private sphere up to international drug transport. Tons of cocaine were shipped from Colombia to Europe, Africa and Australia on a massive scale.
Contacts from the so-called Clan del Golfo appear in Alvaro H.’s mobile phone chats. It’s the largest drug cartel in the world. The Colombian syndicate hit the headlines worldwide in October 2021 when the clan boss Dario Antonio Úsuga (51), known as “Otoniel”, was spectacularly arrested in the jungle of Panama. 500 soldiers and 150 police officers are involved in the action. 22 helicopters are used for the arrest. The search success is teamwork. The Colombians are flanked by the US drug enforcement agency DEA.
Criminal organizations form front in drug war
“Otoniel” will be extradited to the United States in May 2022 and awaiting trial in New York, despite being Colombian. This collaboration is part of the so-called War on Drugs. Since the 1970s, US military personnel have intervened internationally in the destruction of coca plantations, collaborated in arrests and condemned drug lords. The DEA maintains 92 offices in 70 states outside the USA.
But it is not just the USA that is at war. Alliances have long been formed. The Italian Direzione Investigativa Antimafia is in direct contact with the DEA, the Latin American and European authorities. Reason: The European drug trade is firmly in the hands of the Calabrian mafia ‘Ndrangheta. But the Sicilian Cosa Nostra is also involved. They form a front with their own allies: Balkan cartels, African, Colombian and Dominican mafia organizations.
In the spring of 2021, the Trieste anti-mafia unit was already able to strike against the Clan del Golfo. With the help of the DEA, Colombian authorities and Spanish drug investigators, the Guardia di Finanza intercepts over 4,300 kilos of cocaine. The drugs should have been shipped to the Netherlands, Croatia, Slovenia and Bulgaria.
In addition to the Calabrian and Sicilian mafia, organizations from Southeast Europe, Turkey, Africa and South America are also active in Switzerland, says federal prosecutor Sergio Mastroianni. The cartels acted “entrepreneurial” and would therefore also work together, Mastroianni told Blick. A worrying trend. The federal prosecutor says: “If you want to implement drug trafficking on a large scale, you need transnational networks. Criminal organizations have access to such. It’s not for normal gangs.”
* Name changed