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Friday, June 13, 2014

World Cup means big money for drug traffickers

     


Drug cartels in Peru and Bolivia, two of the world's top producers of cocaine, are drooling over the bountiful market being served up next door by the World Cup in Brazil.

"Brazil is now the world's second largest consumer of cocaine, but during the World Cup, it is expected to overtake the United States and become number one," Antezana said.
Brazil has Amazon frontiers with Peru, Colombia and Bolivia that are virtually impossible to control. These are the world's top three producers of coca leaves, the drug's raw material, and cocaine itself.

In the Peruvian border region of Ucayali, 18 labs with a weekly output of 400 kilos of cocaine paste, a precursor of the white powder that people snort, have been destroyed recently.

Military forces were posted along 17,000 kilometers of borders, and some 40 tons of drugs destined for Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro were confiscated.

- Rising prices-
But the financial incentive is overpowering.
"In Peru, a kilo of cocaine can cost $1,000 but in Manaus (Brazil), the same amount goes for $5,000 and in Sao Paulo, it's $7,000," said Romero.
DIRANDRO, the Peruvian anti-drug agency, says a load of 300 kilos of cocaine worth an estimated $300,000 in Peru can go for as much as $3 million in Rio.

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