The case began on Tuesday, when the Coast Guards were alerted by the DEA about a boat that was cruising through the waters of the Pacific Coast.
- DEA and Ministry of Security photos -
Published Friday, January 8, 2021
DEA supports the arrest of six men suspected
of trafficking 248 kilos of cocaine
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff
In an anti-drug operation, agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration, DEA, supported the National Coast Guard Service, for the arrest of six men on suspicion of international drug trafficking.
According to the police report, the case began on Tuesday, when the Coast Guards were alerted by the DEA about a boat that was cruising through the waters of the Pacific Coast and had been detected as coming from South America.
Upon responding to the tip, the Coast Guards managed to intercept the ship around midnight when it had already entered the maritime zone of Costa Rica, 30 nautical miles from Cabo Blanco Beach in Puntarenas Province. This vessel was identified as a fishing boat with Costa Rican plates that read, Happy Happy 1.
In a routine inspection, the Coast Guard detected a shipment of several sacks containing packages of cocaine.
The crew made up of three Costa Ricans, two Ecuadorians, and one Guatemalan was arrested. The suspects' names have not been provided by police.
The boat and the cocaine cargo were seized as part of the evidence in the case.
In a more detailed inspection by officers of the Drug Control Police, they found 13 packages, totaling 248 packages of approximately one kilo each of cocaine.
The six men were taken to the cells of the Public Ministry on Wednesday, where they were interrogated by the judicial agents and after that, they must wait until a judge orders the pre-trial measures against them for suspicion of international drug trafficking.
Last month, the Ministry of Security reported three cases of the arrest of suspected drug traffickers with the support of DEA agents or the U.S. Coast Guard.
On Wednesday, Dec. 16, DEA and U.S. Coast Guard agents aided the Costa Rican Coast Guard officers for the arrest of three Colombian men, suspected of international drug trafficking.
According to the report from the Ministry of Security, the operation began when a U.S. Coast Guard plane detected a ship that was crossing Costa Rican waters at a distance of 200 kilometers from Quepos Beach in Puntarenas Province.
DEA alerted the Costa Rican coast guard officers who managed to intercept the two-engine boat, with no identification plate or a flag identifying its country.
During the initial inspection of the shipment, officers found several large containers containing drugs, so the crew composed of three men surnamed Mosquera-Angúlo, 21; Vallecilla-Garces, 23 and Ruíz- Mojarrango, 38, were arrested.
The ship was towed to the Quepos Beach Dock, where agents of the Drug Control Police made a more detailed inspection of the cargo, confirming that it contained 302 kilograms of cocaine.
A judge ordered six months of pre-trial prison against the three men for international drug trafficking.
Two days earlier, on Monday, Dec. 14, a judge ordered six months in pre-trial prison to three men detained by the U.S. Coast Guard who are suspected of international drug trafficking.
According to the ministry, the case began when the U.S. Coast Guard officers were patrolling the waters of the Caribbean Sea and spotted a gray speedboat with two 150-horsepower engines crossing at seven nautical miles off the coast of Parismina Beach.
The U.S. officers intercepted the speedboat and found suspicious cargo. The crew made up of two Colombian men surnamed González-Bobadilla, Levenson-Henri and a Honduran man surnamed Posada-Rodríguez were detained.
The U.S. Coast Guard handed over the suspects, the boat, and the seized cargo to officers of the Costa Rican Drug Control Police at Portete Port in Limón Province.
After a more detailed inspection of the shipment, the agents of the Drug Control Police determined that it was 234 packages of cocaine, weighing approximately one kilogram each.
A similar case happened on Saturday, Dec. 12, the U.S. Coast Guard intercepted a boat at 8 nautical miles from Westfalia Beach in Limón. It was a blue-gray speedboat with three 300 horsepower engines, no name, no license plate, and no flag.
The U.S. officers coordinated with the Costa Rican Coast Guard to detain the crew of five men, all of Colombian nationality, surnamed Toro-Upegui, Serrano-Silgade, Santize-Delgado, Padilla-Moreno, and Pineda-Hernández.
The suspects and boat were transported to the Portete Port, where officers from the Drug Control Police inspected the shipment, and found 2,557 cocaine packages weighing approximately one kilogram each.
A judge ordered six months of pre-trial prison against the five foreign-born men as suspects of international drug trafficking.
According to statistics from the Ministry of Security, in 2020, 48,101 kilograms of cocaine and 12,483 kilograms of marijuana have been seized. This is a result of the Joint Patrol Agreement between Costa Rica and the United States.
The judicial agents ask for people to report any suspicion of drug sales, transportation or money laundering to the confidential line 00-8000-645, where bilingual agents can answer calls in English or Spanish.
What else should authorities do to end drug trafficking? We would like to know your thoughts on this story. Send your comments to email@example.com
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