Tue. Oct 27th, 2020

    Forces from the United States, Curaçao and England seized 3 tons of cocaine off the coast of Venezuela. In the operation, they captured a boat and its crew and were about to intercept a semi-submersible that also carried drugs. The seizure unleashed violent capture operations and raids in Venezuela. A multinational force that is part of the anti-narcotics operation ordered by the United States against the Maduro-FARC cartel, confiscated more than 3,000 kilos of cocaine that left the Venezuelan coasts, in waters near the island of Curaçao, confirmed DEA sources. Ships and security and intelligence personnel from the United States, Curaçao and England, intercepted a ship from Venezuela with the drug shipment on Tuesday, April 14, a source with direct knowledge of the operation confirmed to First Report. The allied forces also detected a medium-sized semi-submersible submarine that allegedly also carried drugs, and launched in pursuit, but the submersible managed to escape into Venezuelan waters, off the coast of Falcón state, the source said. Read also: After the capture of 3 tons of drugs in Curaçao by multinational forces, the Maduro regime cleans up in Carabobo and Falcón In the operation, several of the crew of the boat were captured. The source confirmed that they were in custody but did not specify whether they were providing information about the origin and destination of the shipment.


    The source also indicated that the investigation into the case seeks to establish whether there are financial or banking connections both in Curaçao and in the United States, particularly in Miami.
    The confiscation of the large shipment of cocaine unleashed violent police operations in Venezuela between Friday and Saturday, particularly in the towns of Puerto Cabello, Carabobo state, in the north-central zone of Venezuela, and Punto Fijo, in the Paraguaná peninsula, in the North-western part of the country, where the leaders of the cartel responsible for the shipment allegedly reside.
    The DEA does not rule out that the operations in Venezuela have the objective of trying to hide the links of those responsible with the Nicolás Maduro regime, and show an alleged willingness to fight drug cartels in Venezuelan territory.
    Also: New details of the US operation to seize 3 tons of drugs in Curaçao
    The anti-drug agency will use the evidence from the captured cache, and the testimony of the crew in custody, to show allied countries in the region the links of the Nnicolás Maduro regime to cocaine trafficking, the source said.
    The Bolivarian National Guard (GNB) command reported on April 15 the capture of three people linked to drug trafficking organizations in Carabobo and Falcón, apparently related to the seized cargo.
    Venezuelans Raúl Roberto del Gallego, Orlando José Silva Moreno and Jesús Antonio Blanco Goitía were detained after the National Anti-Drug Office (ONA) received an anonymous complaint linking them to drug trafficking activities.
    "The complainant stated that a group of citizens from the states of Falcón and Carabobo are part of an organization that is dedicated to illicit drug trafficking in said states, having meetings on several occasions in the city of Caracas," said the official part of the GNB.
    The Third National Fisaclía of the Public Ministry, with jurisdiction over drugs, opened criminal proceedings against the detainees. After the arrest, a former high-ranking Carabobo police official denounced the detainees' ties to the current governor of Carabobo state, Rafael Lacava. "Very long and silent night for the governor @ rafaellacava10, it will dawn and we will see ... More than one photograph is erased on the networks ... Nobody knows Narco del Gallego now ... what not?" Wrote the former police chief of Carabobo, Salvatore Lucchese, on his Twitter account @sllucchese the same day of the arrests. First Report unsuccessfully attempted to send messages to Governor Lacava through his social media accounts, requesting his version of events. Lucchese erroneously reported that the quantity of drug detained in Curaçao had been 16 tons, but provided an extensive list of operators and local drug lords linked to the case. Simultaneously with the arrests in Carabobo, GNB command groups were deployed in Falcón state, in search of the rest of those involved in the ONA complaint. The main figure requested by the GNB is businessman Emiliano Martínez, a prosperous merchant who allegedly controls drug trafficking in the Paraguaná Peninsula. Unconfirmed versions indicated that several command groups made up of agents from the FAES, CONAS, GNB police agencies and a special operations unit of the Venezuelan Navy, took the city of Punto Fijo in search of members of the cartels involved in sending the 3 tons confiscated by the United States, Curaçao and England.
    The versions indicated that groups of Mexican cartels from Sinaloa and the Gulf were operating in Paraguaná. Such versions could not be confirmed.
    According to the local newspaper La Mañana, since the night of this Friday, April 17, police officers carried out "raids on homes of those who are allegedly related to drug trafficking in the Paraguaná peninsula."
    "Unofficially, it was learned that so far there are eleven detainees, among whom presumably are members of the Smith family, who are listed as local businessmen," the newspaper said in a note published on Saturday 18.
    The newspaper also reported that there are arrest warrants with local businessmen that are also linked to illegal activities related to money laundering from drugs.
    A source residing in the Punto Fijo area, told First Report that the police forces raided warehouses in the Carirubana area, where they found armored vehicles and large tanks of diesel or diesel fuel, used to power boat engines.
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