The Rise and Fall of the 21st Century Pablo Escobar

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“You beat me.” With these only two words, the most dangerous (and certainly No. 1 until the day before yesterday) stoically faced his arrest by the Colombian authorities drug dealer worldwide and leader of Colombia ‘s largest criminal gang, the Gulf Clan.

THE Dairo Antonio Ushuga or “Otoniel”, known to the prosecuting authorities of both his country and those of Latin America but also of US (which had advertised him for five million dollars), as «Pablo Escobar of 21ου He was arrested 24 hours ago after years of investigations during a coordinated police and military operation by the Colombian government, which even promised to extradite him to the United States for trial.

The operation involved more than 700 police and military personnel with the support of 18 helicopters and was the largest ever held in the history of the country for the arrest of a single man – but, of course, Ushuga was not a random “man”.

The government of the country had an offer from the beginningi pay $ 800,000 for information on his whereabouts, while the US has already given the Colombian government the “indexes” of five million dollars.

The arrest of 50-year-old Otoniel, which took place inside Nekokli hideout in the inhospitable jungle of northwestern Colombia, very close to the border with Panama, is the biggest blow the Colombian government has dealt to organized crime in the country since the assassination of Pablo Escobar in December 1993, that is, almost 30 years ago – a fact that was admitted by the President of the country, Ivan Duque, who welcomed the arrest of Otoniel in his televised message, stating that “this is the biggest blow against drug trafficking in our country this century and it is comparable only to the fall of Pablo Escobar in the 1990s. “

The rise and fall of Otoniel

THE Gulf Clan has been Colombia’s most powerful drug gang for nearly twenty years, and the world’s largest cocaine exporter.

Otoniel became the head of the Clan del Golfo, after its previous leader – his brother – was killed by the police on a New Year’s Eve party raid almost ten years ago.

The gang, which operates in several provinces and has extensive international connections, is involved in drug and human trafficking, gold mining and blackmail, and has stable, dynamic and robust presence in almost 300 municipalities across the country, according to the independent Indepaz Institute.

It is believed to have about 1,800 armed members recruited mainly by far-right paramilitary groups, and members have been arrested as far as Argentina, Brazil, Honduras, Peru and Spain.

In fact, Brooklyn and Miami federal courts have accused him of importing at least 73 metric tons of cocaine into the United States between 2003 and 2014. through countries such as Venezuela, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama and Honduras, while President Duke said Otoniel was also responsible for police killings, recruiting minors and child sexual abuse.

Otoniel will be extradited within the next 24 hours to the US, and then he will be transferred there under draconian security measures and will be tried in 2022 by a federal court, with the His sentence is expected to be life imprisonment, which means he will spend the rest of his life in a high-security US prison.

THE Colombia continues to rank first in the world in cocaine production, while the US remains the country where the largest quantities are traded and purchased worldwide.

However, the problem of drug trafficking in Colombia continues (and will continue) to be intense even after the arrest of Otoniel. The government of the right-wing president accuses other armed organizations, such as the National Liberation Army (ELN), but also the apostates of the former FARC guerrilla organization, which laid down its arms under the 2016 peace agreement, of being financed by drug trafficking proceeds. and the illegal exploitation of mines, mainly gold mines.

And the problem will continue, as everything shows, to be perpetuated in the Latin American country, which It has not been a little over the last fifty years, due to its No.1 exportable product.

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