|Photo by Rodrigo Rodrich for El Comercio.|
Members of a Peruvian anti-drug task force have swept through the border region with Colombia and Brazil this month, destroying coca fields and laboratories, according to a report from El Comercio.
As part of Operation Amazonian Trapezoid 2011, 200 police officers descended on the province of Ramón Castilla in Loreto region, starting July 4th. They destroyed fifteen large cocaine laboratories, as well as 33 hectares of clandestine coca fields.
This marks the first time that Peru’s anti-drug forces have acted on the shared border with Colombia and Brazil.
They are responding to a growing drug industry in the region. With their remote terrain and ease of access to Colombia and Brazil, the towns of Caballacocha and Santa Rosa have blossomed as centers for coca production.
El Comercio’s data suggests that some 770 hectares of land in the province is devoted to illegal coca cultivation, and that this number represents a 20% increase from two years ago.