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Latino Daily News

Thursday June 28, 2012

Colombian Navy and DEA Seize Submarine Used to Traffic Drugs

Colombian Navy and DEA Seize Submarine Used to Traffic Drugs

Photo: Colombian Navy and DEA Seize Submarine Used to Traffic Drugs

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On Monday, the Colombian Navy, with help from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) recently seized a semi-submersible craft believed to have been used by the Rastrojos drug gang.

The 2-engine craft, worth in the ballpark of $1 million, was found in a jungle river near Mosquera, Nariño, Colombia. It is 20 meters long, can carry roughly eight tons of cocaine as well as four passengers.

On Wednesday, a semi-submersible vessel capable of transporting between 10 and 15 tons of drugs was found under construction in the Gulf of Guayaquil, the Ecuadorian navy said.

The sub is related to a similar vessel that was scuttled by its crew to avoid capture in January, the navy said.

The semi-submersible, which is 15 meters (49 feet) long by four meters (13 feet) wide, was 70 percent complete.

The vessel has four compartments, including one in the bow for ballast, a large storage area, an engine room and a fuel bunker.

“The apparatus was located in a strategic sector of the Gulf, allowing it, once completed, to easily enter the open sea without being detected,” the navy said in a statement.

The vessel was hidden in dense vegetation and covered with mud to make it difficult to detect by air or sea, the navy said.

The sub was found around midnight Monday on a small island between the Verde and Escalante islands during a joint operation conducted by the navy, coast guard, marine corps and Guayaquil port authority.