Drug enforcement agents seized more than 12 tons of cocaine and marijuana in Colombia during a three-day multi-faceted operation in several regions, officials said Sunday.
Almost 42 tons of controlled chemical products were also seized in the anti-drug campaign, which was launched by the National Police's drug enforcement unit in six provinces.
The results of the offensive were presented to the press by the head of the drug enforcement unit, Gen. Luis Alberto Perez, in Riohacha, the capital of La Guajira province, where he traveled for an operation in which his personnel seized 1,825 kilos of cocaine.
The cocaine was being transported in a truck, but the occupants fled after exchanging gunfire with police on a road near Dibulla, a town on the country's Caribbean coast through which the drug was to have been shipped to Central America with the ultimate destination of the United States.
The shipment belonged to Los Urabeños, one of the gangs that took over from the dissolved United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia, or AUC, military federation, Perez said.
A second shipment of 1,696 kilos of the drug was seized at a laboratory that was raided by police in the mountainous area of Mondomo, in the southwestern province of Cauca.
That lab, which had the capacity to produce two tons of pure cocaine per month, belonged to a front of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, guerrillas, Perez said.
Another 1,527 kilos of cocaine were seized at a laboratory in the rural area outside Tauramena, a town in the eastern province of Casanare, Perez said, without saying to which group or band it belonged.
Drug enforcement agents seized another 436 kilos of coke in three operations on roads near the cities of Florencia, Manizales and Popayan in different parts of the country.
During the operation, more than 7.5 tons of marijuana were seized in the rural part of Buenaventura and on a highway near Cerrito, both in the southwestern province of Valle del Cauca, Perez said.
Drug enforcement agents also found 20 kilos of heroin hidden in a rural area in the southwestern province of Nariño that belonged to the Los Restrojos gang, Perez said.
And drug enforcement agents also intercepted 41,839 kilos of controlled chemical products that were being transported along a highway in Norte de Santander province in northeastern Colombia and that were destined for labs controlled by the FARC, the anti-drug unit commander said. EFE