The head of the FARC’s 30th Front, Jorge Naphtali Umenza Velasco, alias “Mincho,” was killed on Thursday in a bombing raid in the rural area of Buenaventura during a Navy and Air Force joint operation.
Along with Mincho, who was sought for extradition to the United States for drug trafficking, four other guerrillas were killed and two were captured.
According to official U.S. reports, Mincho had “a purely mafioso profile,” with contacts in Central America and Ecuador. He is also said to be the link between the FARC and the Mexican Mafia, newspaper El Tiempo reports.
Mincho was the man responsible for purchasing weapons for the FARC. Last year in September when police seized 74 AK-47 rifles, Chief of Police General Oscar Naranjo said that Mincho had commissioned “with urgent character” to strengthen the fronts operating in the southwest of the country.
Investigators said that such weapons would have to have been paid with drug shipments.
Commander of the Pacific Naval Force Admiral Hernando Wills noted that the FARC’s 30th Front is responsible for the largest cocaine exportation in the west of the country.
Last September police seized a submarine off the coast of Choco with satellite and computer systems and the ability to carry up to four tons of cocaine that Mincho was responsible for acquiring, according to newspaper La Semana.
An intelligence report from the police over the killing of Mincho stated, “It demonstrates the recovery work of our armed structures, especially the joint command of the west.”
According to police, the smuggling route in the Pacific used by the network had been from Colombia through Panama to China.