The Secretariat of the Navy of Mexico and the Navy of the National Defense of Guatemala develop strategic operations against drug trafficking on the Pacific coast.
Mexico and Guatemala routinely conduct combined maritime, air and land surveillance operations against transnational organized crime organizations. Thanks to this coordination, in the last week of January, the Secretariat of the Navy (SEMAR) of Mexico managed to seize almost one ton of cocaine off the coast of Chiapas.
“The Mexican Navy carried out the seizure of 38 packages containing cocaine, off the coast of Puerto Chiapas, Chiapas, a few kilometers from the border with Guatemala,” the Mexican Ministry of the Navy said in a statement. He also indicated that the insured drug has a weight of 910 kilograms.
Information exchange and cooperation
The operation was carried out with fieldwork and information exchange between both countries. The Navy of the National Defense of Guatemala followed up on a suspicious vessel from South America and warned the Mexican Navy about its illegal entry into Mexican waters.
“[The information] allowed us to locate naval units in the area to locate the cargo that was abandoned by a smaller vessel, seeing the presence of the authorities,” Vice Admiral Juan Randolfo Pardo Aguilar, commander of the Defense Navy, told Diálogo National of Guatemala. “The vessel was near the maritime border between Guatemala and Mexico.”
The command to Naval Region Mexican Navy ordered an operation that included surface and air units. “For the mission was deployed a combat aircraft, which when conducting maritime surveillance sighted an infringing vessel that launched cargo to the sea, leaving it to drift 222 kilometers from the coast. The oceanic patrol, with an onboard helicopter and a coastal patrol that was in the area, arrived at the site to secure the packages, “the statement said.
Theoretically, the nylon bundles tied in series with a rope would be rescued by other boats, to continue their illicit transport to the places of distribution and consumption. Based on the characteristics of the vessel and information and analysis of the route that followed, the authorities presume that it was heading towards the coasts of Guatemala or southern Mexico.
SEMAR explained that “a method used by drug trafficking groups to transport drugs to Mexican coasts by sea from South America is to leave the drug moored afloat, ‘marked’ [electronically signaled to indicate a specific geographical location]. Afterwards, the packages are recovered by the narcotics traffickers’ boats. ” The seizure of cocaine in the Pacific is increasing, says Seguridad, Justicia y Paz , a nongovernmental organization based in Mexico.
The NGO indicates that cocaine is located on cargo ships of international maritime lines, in speedboats with outboard motors or afloat off the coast of Chiapas, Guerrero, Oaxaca and Colima. The shipments go from 70 kg. up to several tons. Likewise, the International Narcotics Control Board of the UN says that 76 percent of the cocaine that enters the United States from South America crosses Central America and Mexico.
Information and cooperation
According to the 5th. SEMAR 2016-2017 work report, as a result of the missions carried out in 2017, more than 14 300 anti-drug operations were carried out, with an average monthly participation of 3150 soldiers. In the first two months of 2018, the Mexican Navy seized 530 kg of cocaine in the ports of Guerrero and Colima. In addition, it confiscated 49 tons of chemical precursors used in the manufacture of synthetic drugs in the port of Manzanillo. In the operations, seven people were arrested, including three foreigners.
In order to strengthen the fight against drugs and eradicate the activities of criminal groups, SEMAR coordinates the execution of high-impact operations with dependencies of the Mexican Government such as the Ministry of National Defense, the Federal Police, the Attorney General’s Office and several states. of the country, including Chiapas, Quintana Roo, Michoacán, State of Mexico and Mexico City. In addition, the Navy conducts coordinated operations with neighboring countries.
“The exchange of information [between Mexico and Guatemala] is fundamental to fight against drug trafficking. The success is due to the fact that the exchange is carried out in real time, which allows us to be opportune for the interceptions “, highlighted the Valmte. Brown. “The relationship between both naval forces has been generated based on trust and combined operations with positive results.”
“The mechanism used between Mexico and Guatemala for cooperation between their naval forces is within the framework of the Military Commanders Board of the Guatemala-Mexico Border Area and good communication between the command posts of the Navy of the National Defense of Guatemala and the Secretary of the Navy, “Valmte concluded. Brown. “We have generated trust and commitment to cooperate together to combat this transnational threat.”