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The Colombian Tax and Customs Police (Polfa) seized 7.8 million medicines among counterfeit, contraband and institutional use products, in what is the biggest blow against illegal drug trafficking in the country.

Medicines include products to treat infections and allergies: antibacterials, antibiotics, pain relievers, and anti-inflammatories. As reported by the press, others of special control and regulated by the National Narcotics Fund were also found.

The merchandise was valued at 8,000 million Colombian pesos (1.94 million dollars).

According to Polfa, it was an operation in conjunction with the Prosecutor’s Office, the National Institute for Food and Drug Surveillance, and the Directorate of National Taxes and Customs.

The theory is that the contraband material entered from Ecuador, while the stolen drugs were illicitly taken by officials from health centers in Risaralda, Santander, Norte de Santander and Atlántico.

“Then the medicines were sent in parcels to La Guajira, where one part was sold locally in a chain of pharmacies and on the streets, while the other was shipped by land and illegally to Venezuela,” the report stated.

All medications were found in 13 locations in Maicao.

The operation resulted in eight detainees who are estimated to be part of an organization that has dozens of stores to market the drugs, as well as four warehouses for their storage.

“The commercial premises are owned by the head of the organization, which are in the name of third parties and who would be in charge of managing these establishments,” said Polfa.

Sources: Semana.com and El Colombiano

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