Since the capture of the top leader of the Gulf Clan, Dairo Antonio Úsuga, alias ‘Otoniel’, the Colombian authorities have been carrying out important operations against the criminal structure that have resulted in several arrests. In the last hours, 13 people were captured for allegedly being money laundering for this armed group.
The operation called ‘San Gabriel’ began to take place a year and a half ago, when the authorities of Cali and Medellín jointly investigated about 11 companies that, under the facade of textile shops, laundered money for the Clan del Golfo. The captures were carried out in Valle del Cauca (Cali and Jamundí) and in Antioquia (Medellín, Envigado, Sabaneta, El Retiro and La Ceja).
According to the authorities, the captured are four leaders and nine members of the structure, who managed fictitious companies that are accused of laundering money from drug trafficking. General Jorge Luis Vargas, director of the National Police, explained that about 11 front companies used for this purpose were identified.
He explained, as quoted by El Colombiano, that although the companies were legally constituted, when the researchers approached the sites that were listed as headquarters, they did not find anything there.
To carry out the ‘San Gabriel’ operation, the Police Director pointed out that the authorities supported each other and worked hand in hand with the agencies of the United States and United Kingdom To collect data against fictitious people and companies, they managed to do a rigorous accounting expert’s report that revealed several irregularities.
General Vargas spoke with RCN News and added that the tentacles of these companies to launder money reached up to “China, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore, Panama and PeruThey were also used by the trade route to those countries ”. In addition, the uniformed officer explained that these alleged textile companies imported textile merchandise from those countries, but They bought containers with said merchandise and only paid 10% or 15% legally, that is, they evaded taxes of at least 85%.
The officer recalled that, in Colombia, there is a record 420 tons of narcotics that were directed by alias ‘Otoniel’, when he coordinated the illegal operations of the Gulf Clan, and that he sent to several countries in Europe and also to the United States. In addition, he pointed out that the group’s money laundering network exceeds four trillion pesos.
These networks used the ports of Buenaventura and Cartagena to enter the happy merchandise and, in addition, with this activity they achieved an unjustified increase in assets, since the assets of the alleged perpetrators amounted to about 100 million dollars, according to the investigators.
The 13 people captured were now placed at the disposal of the competent authorities to answer for the crimes of money laundering, illicit enrichment, smuggling and aggravated conspiracy to commit a crime.
General Vargas stressed that this operation is one of the most important against the Clan del Golfo, after the capture of alias ‘Otoniel’, its top leader. In addition to this work, after the fall of Úsusa, 187 members of the second and third level of the criminal structure have been captured, as well as important blows to the criminal finance and drug trafficking components.
“This is one of the most important results, where there are approximately 100 million dollars in the countries I named above, which in Colombia are 383 billion pesos; Among those 13 people captured, four are top-level in money laundering, ”explained the director of the National Police on RCN Radio.