Colombian Govt Busts FARC, ERPAC Cocaine Lab

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In what is becoming an increasing trend, Colombia authorities discovered a cocaine-processing laboratory in the eastern plains of the country, which they said was run by right-wing paramilitaries and left-wing guerrillas.

El Espectador reports that the lab, which was located in Acacia, Meta, was run by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia’s (FARC) 53rd Front and members of the Popular Revolutionary Anti-Terrorist Army of Colombia (ERPAC).

Authorities found 1.5 tons of processed cocaine, which they valued at $100,000, and said the lab had the capacity to produce two tons per month.

The FARC, and the smaller rebel group the National Liberation Army (ELN), have been aligning themselves with former right-wing paramilitary groups like the ERPAC to form production and distribution chains for drugs.

The alliances between old enemies represent the short- and, possibly, long-term future of drug trafficking in Colombia, especially given the Colombian government’s recent success in killing and capturing top level leaders of these organizations. In the latest blow to the FARC, last week Colombian forces killed its top leader, Guillermo Leon Saenz, alias “Alfonso Cano.”

The resulting fragmentation that follows these government efforts has made for strange bedfellows in the Colombian underworld.

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