Interpol has announced the results of a major operation against arms trafficking carried out in Latin America: more than 14,000 people were arrested, about 8,000 weapons and 305,000 bullets were seized. The operation, dubbed “Trigger IX,” has been called the largest arms-trafficking operation ever coordinated by Interpol. It took place from March 12 to April 2 and also led to the seizure of 203 tons of cocaine worth about $5.7 billion. Finally, 372 tons of “chemical precursors” were seized, substances used in the production of drugs such as heroin, cocaine and amphetamines.
“The fact that an arms operation has led to such massive drug seizures is further proof, if needed, that these crimes are related,” said Interpol Secretary General Jürgen Stock. Twenty organized crime groups involved in arms trafficking were also targeted during the operation, and eleven trafficked persons were also released in Paraguay. Fifteen countries took part in the operation: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, El Salvador, Uruguay.
Interpol, the International Criminal Police Organization, is based in Lyon, France: it was born in 1923 with the aim of making the police forces of the various member states collaborate to locate and arrest criminals, or presumed criminals, around the the world.