Authorities Seize Over Two Metric Tons of CocaineSeptember 8, 2015 in Mexico
Authorities in Colombia and Mexico have seized over two metric tons of cocaine disguised as printer toner. At Bogota’s El Dorado airport, police officers discovered the first batch of cocaine when a drug-sniffing Labrador detected traces of the narcotic concealed inside a shipment of forty eight boxes bound for an as yet unnamed company in the Mexican state of Sinaloa. After chemical analysis confirmed that the substance was in fact cocaine, Colombian police then notified their Mexican counterparts of the discovery, which led to the seizure of a second batch which had arrived at Mexico City Airport on a flight from Bogota some hours earlier.
“None of the operations resulted in arrests, but Colombian police and their Mexican counterparts have indications of the two caches’ owners: apparently the cargo would be received by member of the Sinaloa cartel and was sent by a drug trafficking networking rooted in Colombia’s Atlantic coast,” said the director of Colombian police, General Rodolfo Palomino in an official statement.
Referred to as “coca negra” or “black cocaine”, the practice of mixing cocaine base and/or cocaine hydrochloride with other substances in order to disguise its appearance and to make it undetectable to drug sniffing dogs has been used by Colombian drug smugglers since at least 1998. Once the substance has reached its destination, the drug is then extracted by passing it through a chemical solvent such as acetone.
According to the latest Colombia Coca Survey, which is produced by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in association with the Colombian Government, the cultivation and production of cocaine has increased exponentially over the previous year. In 2014, the net coca cultivation area alone had risen from 48,000 hectares to 69,000 hectares, an increase of 44 percent. This substantially increased production capacity and allowed Colombia to produce a staggering 442 metric tons of cocaine over the same period.