• Monday, Dec 06, 2021
  • Last Update : 01:15 am

You beat me: Colombian drug lord told armed forces when caught

  • Published at 11:21 am October 25th, 2021
Dairo Antonio Usuga David
Dairo Antonio Usuga David, alias "Otoniel", top leader of the Gulf clan, is photographed after being captured, in Bogota, Colombia October 23, 2021. Picture taken October 23, 2021 Reuters

Colombia had offered a reward of up to 3 billion pesos while the US government had put up a reward of $5 million for help locating him

The man Colombia describes as the world's most dangerous drug trafficker told security forces: "You beat me" when he was captured during an operation this weekend, the government said on Sunday, pledging to extradite him swiftly to the United States.

Dairo Antonio Usuga, known as Otoniel, was by Colombia's armed forces during an operation in a rural area of Colombia's Uraba region, Antioquia province, which involved more than 500 members of Colombia's special forces and 22 helicopters, officials said on Saturday.

Otoniel is accused of exporting hundreds of tonnes of cocaine each year, while President Ivan Duque said on Saturday he is also responsible for killing police officers, recruiting minors and sexually abusing children.

Colombia's government will file a petition on Monday with the Andean country's Supreme Court to extradite Otoniel to the United States, Justice Minister Wilson Ruiz told Reuters on Sunday, adding the process could take four weeks to complete.

"Extradition awaits all those who commit international crimes," Defense Minister Diego Molano told journalists in Necocli, close to where Otoniel, 50, was captured.

Dairo Antonio Usuga David, alias "Otoniel", top leader of the Gulf clan, escorted by Colombian military soldiers after being captured, in Necocli, Colombia October 23, 2021 Reuters

Colombia had offered a reward of up to 3 billion pesos (about $800,000) for information concerning Otoniel’s whereabouts, while the US government had put up a reward of $5 million for help locating him.

Both rewards will be paid, Molano said, while describing Otoniel as "the worst kind" of criminal.

Otoniel rose to become the leader of the drug-trafficking group Clan del Golfo, or Gulf Clan, following stints as a left-wing guerrilla and later as a paramilitary.

The Clan del Golfo has a presence in 12 of Colombia's 32 provinces, and counts some 3,800 members, according to information provided by Colombia's national police.

Clan del Golfo is involved as well with illegal mining, authorities say. The government also accuses the group of threatening and killing community leaders across the country.

Colombia's police chief, General Jorge Vargas, said much of the information leading to Otoniel's capture came from Clan del Golfo members.

"A lot of Clan del Golfo's people betrayed him," Vargas said.

Otoniel trafficked between 180 tonnes and 200 tonnes of cocaine a year with the Clan del Golfo, and is responsible for the deaths of more than 200 members of Colombia's security forces, the Defense Ministry said in a statement.

Colombian authorities launched Operation Agamemnon in 2016 as they worked to close in on Otoniel, killing and capturing dozens of his lieutenants, going after his finances and forcing him to be constantly on the move, according to police.

In 2017, a video in which Otoniel announced his intent to submit to justice was published, but the plan never came to fruition.


63
Facebook 61
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail