Posted by Teresa Welsh on Nov 24, 2010 Leave a comment

27 alleged members of ‘Los Rastrojos’ gang arrested

Colombia news - Captured

Twenty-seven alleged members of drug gang “Los Rastrojos” were arrested in ten simultaneous operations carried out across the country, a Popayan judge announced Wednesday, reports Radio Santa Fe.

The suspects were detained in operations carried out by national police in Padilla, Cauca department, and Tulua, Sevilla and Cali in the Valle del Cauca department. A prosecutor from the unit against “emerging criminal bands” said he has evidence against those arrested, including their aliases and the weapons and uniforms they used. They are accused of aggravated crime, and the manufacturing, trafficking and possession of arms meant for the exclusive use of the military forces.

During a judicial hearing, 21 of the detainees admitted to committing the crimes, and four expressed interest in striking a deal with the prosecution. All 27 are currently being held in jails in Cucuta.

On November 18, another 23 Los Rastrojos members were arrested. The group is one of the most powerful narco-paramilitary groups in Colombia and was formed from the Norte de Valle drug cartel.

In July, one of the gang’s leaders, known as “R-9”  was captured by Colombian authorities in Pasto, Nariño department.