Colombian drug lord arrested


One of Colombia's most wanted drug lords has been arrested in Venezuela, Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos has said.

"This is perhaps the most important arrest" in recent times, Mr Santos said, calling the trafficker, Daniel Barrera, "the last of the great kingpins".

Venezuela's justice minister, Tareck El Aissami, confirmed the arrest, saying on Twitter: "It is the most important blow" to drug trafficking "that we have made in Venezuela".

Mr Santos, in televised remarks, said the operation that led to Barrera's capture was directed from Washington and involved the co-operation of Venezuelan drug police, Colombian authorities, the CIA and British intelligence officials.

The president said Venezuelan authorities captured Barrera in San Cristobal, near the border with Colombia. The head of Colombia's National Police said Barrera's extradition to Colombia was being arranged.

The arrest is a potential blow to Colombia's largest rebel group, which was closely allied with Barrera, known as El Loco. The Colombian government and the rebel group, the leftist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or Farc, have agreed to begin peace talks next month.

In 2010, Barrera was singled out as playing a significant role in Farc's financing and drug-trafficking networks.

New York Times

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Screen Name Selection


Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.