Photo: Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos
During a graduation ceremony of 106 Colombian National Police (CNP) officers on Thursday, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos and the Director General of the Colombian National Police, General Oscar Naranjo, honored U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director John Morton.
Director Morton was honored during the graduation ceremony of 97th (CNP) Officer Academy, which occurred at the General Santander War College in Bogotá.
According to the Colombian government, Morton received the “Extraordinary Distinguished Service Medal,” a distinction that underscores the bravery and successful results of officials involved in combating transnational crime, especially drug trafficking and money laundering.
During the ceremony, President Santos stated that due to the efforts led by Director Morton and the CNP, the most powerful and sophisticated drug trafficking and money laundering network in the world was dismantled. From 2003 to 2009, the ‘Pacific Rim’ cartel was responsible for approximately half of drug trafficking activities between Colombia, the United States, Mexico, Morocco and the Netherlands. So far, Operation Pacific Rim has netted seizures of more than 3.8 tons of cocaine, $170 million in cash and $179 million in property.
ICE has 70 offices in 48 countries, including in Colombia.