News Briefing – Week beginning on 29 September

Victor Ramon Navarro, one of the most important and ruthless cocaine warlords in Colombia, was killed in Catatumbo, during an airstrike followed by a ground operation organised by the Colombian Army.

Diezani Allison-Madueke, Nigeria’s former minister of petroleum, was arrested in London as accused of money laundering. The former minister’s arrest would be the first high profile case of president Buhari’s anti-corruption campaign which has brought under investigation several Nigerian key government agencies in the first four months of his administration.

Brazilian authorities have launched an investigation for money laundering against Eduardo Cunha, the speaker of Brazil’s lower house of Congress. Cunha has already faced a criminal investigation over allegations he accepted a US$5 million bribe as part of a corruption scheme at Petrobras, the state-owned oil firm.

Spanish authorities seized 300 kg of cocaine worth US$11 million from a container found in Valencia loaded with pureed bananas that arrived from Costa Rica.

The West African Police Information System (WAPIS) has been inaugurated in Ghana’s capital, Accra, to fight organized crime and terrorism in the region. The initiative is aimed at creating a common police-information system across West Africa to share criminal information on a timely basis.

Lithuanian authorities seized about 600 kg of cocaine detected in a 250-ton coal shipment from Colombia. Police authorities declared that the drugs were probably bound for the Russian market and that their estimated street value was about US$45 million.

Police officials from 10 different countries across Latin America met in Montevideo for a conference organised to strengthen regional efforts to combat money laundering. The week-long training session, organized by the The Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering in South America (GAFISUD) seeks to strengthen efforts to combat financial and economic crimes.

German authorities say 300 kg of cocaine have been found hidden in a container loaded with engine parts that had been shipped from Brazil to the Belgian port of Antwerp.

Portugal police shut down of a sophisticated cocaine laboratory in Lisbon specialised in the extraction of cocaine hydrochloride dissolved into bottles of cachaça, a distilled spirit made from sugar cane imported from Brazil.