Colombian Drug Lord Pablo Montano Arrested in Brazil

One of the world’s most hunted drug traffickers accused of shipping more than 70 tons of cocaine to the United States has been arrested in Brazil as part of a major international drug bust, Colombian police said Wednesday, May 17.

Colombian-born Pablo Rayo Montano, who had been on the run for a decade, was captured Tuesday, May 16, by Brazilian authorities in São Paulo as part of a three-year operation coordinated by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

More than three dozen others were arrested during simultaneous raids in the United States and Latin America, officials said.

"It’s estimated the amount of cocaine supplied by this organization was enough to poison 37 million consumers," Colombia’s anti-narcotics police said in a news release.

Called Twin Oceans, the operation targeted a major drug cartel that used go-fast boats and submarines to ship cocaine and other drugs from clandestine ports along Colombia’s coastlines.

Officials in nine countries including Argentina, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Panama, Venezuela, Mexico and the United States have arrested more than 100 people during the investigation, and have seized 47.5 tons of cocaine, 22 pounds of heroin and 770 pounds of marijuana.

The U.S. Department of Justice considered Montano a key target, accusing him of running one of the world’s largest drug smuggling operations from São Paulo, where he had lived for the past three years.

Colombian police said he began trafficking drugs in the early 1990s from the Pacific port of Buenaventura and quickly rose to prominence within the now-defunct Cali cartel alongside a top leader, Helmer "Pacho" Herrera, who was killed in a Colombian jail in 1998.

Police said that in Brazil, Montano set up a number of companies, including an art gallery in an upscale district, to launder proceeds from the monthly sale of an estimated 22 tons of cocaine to the United States and Europe.

O.Ch.

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  • Show Comments (7)

  • Eric Johnson

    Who is Fernando Collar? I saw that he was mentioned in one of the above articles and wanted to know what crime he commited.

  • Guest

    Hot Brazilian German women
    Those r the criminals running amok in Brazil. I wanna bang em all while wired on Monatno’s finest white. Wilt Chamberlin can kiss my ass!

  • Guest

    CeceilBDemento
    Re: The “Guest” that knows everything but nothing. Biggs is under high security at Belmarsh prison in south London..http://news.scotsman.com/topics.cfm?tid=921&id=913542004

  • Guest

    well, you may be right, afterall, if he breaks the law he’ll be nailed. Better than in brazil, look at Fernando Collar?? When I discovered he was living in a 7 million dollar home in Miami I was enraged…at the American gov’t.!! I even called the state department, and the American Embassy in Brasilia, wanting to know why this criminal was allowed to live in my country!!

    You know what their answer was??? Because HE NEVER BROKE THE LAW…..HE WAS NEVER TRIED, NOR CONVICTED FOR A CRIME!!!!

    YET ONE MORE EXAMPLE OF THE TYPICAL BRAZILIAN CORRUPT JUSTICE SYSTEM IN ACTION!!

  • Guest

    Well………..
    at least there is a safe haven…….maybe Bush and his cronies will wind up there in 2008

  • Guest

    it’s a paradise for criminals.

  • Guest

    This just shows….
    …how to get impunity in Brazil ! Not even a need to hide. Just make the requested regular payment to the corrupted government and politicians…and despite you are one of the world most wanted man, you can safely do business in Brazil and even set up an art boutique, certainly go to the myriads of cocktails given by the wealthy, the government and the governmental agencies.
    The same happened to Biggs the UK train robber who lived with total impounity in Brazil…for decades.
    The same again happened to thousands and thousands of Nazis after World War 2 who went to Brazil with all the money stolen during the war !
    And guess what ! 5 years after the ex-Nazis invaded Brazil, you suddenly had an economic boom !
    Quite well known too that Brazil is a paradise for those wanting to avoid the justice of their country !
    You have tens of thousand of foreign people hiding in your country !

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