(Photo by RAUL ARBOLEDA/AFP via Getty Images)
OAN Roy Francis
UPDATED 1:28 PM – Tuesday, March 14, 2023
A submarine with two dead bodies and around three tons of cocaine onboard was seized in the Pacific Ocean near the coast of Colombia.
The roughly 50-foot-long submarine was carrying almost 5,800 pounds of cocaine which was valued at more than $87 million according to officials. The seizure had kept more than 6 million doses of cocaine off the Central American market, where the submarine was headed.
The country’s navy announced the discovery saying that they had also found two other survivors in “poor health” who were given first aid.
“These people’s poor health state is presumably due to the inhalation of toxic fumes caused by fuel problems inside the boat,” Captain Cristian Andres Guzman Echeverry said.
The findings, along with the two rescued men, were taken to Tumaco “where they were presented to the Technical Investigation Corps of the Attorney General’s Office.”
Colombia’s Ministry of National Defense released a statement about the incident.
“Apparently, there was an accident inside the semi-submersible due to the generation of toxic gases from the fuel,” the statement read. “The two men were treated and transported to a nearby vessel, where they were given the necessary medical attention to safeguard their lives.”
The submarine was one of three that have been recently seized that have allegedly belonged to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC).
FARC is a Marxist guerrilla group that attempted to overthrow the government between 1964 and 2017. To finance their efforts, the group had been involved in drug trafficking, kidnappings and other criminal activities.
The group had also developed narco-submarines that travel partially submerged to avoid radars and other surveillance equipment. The submarines are able to also become fully submerged and carry more than 10 tons of drugs to Central America.
After the seizure, the Navy and the Ministry of National Defense said that they are committed to “cracking down on any narco vessels” in its country.
“The Colombian Navy will continue deploying all its capabilities to counter the scourge of drug trafficking structures that commit crimes in the Colombian Pacific,” the agency said.