Corruption

Counterfeiting

Obstruction of Justice

Participation in an organized criminal group

Trafficking in firearms

Offences

• Enabling illegal entry
• Illicit trafficking (Article 3(e))
• possession or use of fraudulent licences

Ship Otterloo - October 2001

UNODC No.:
COLx002

Fact Summary

Chronology of Events:
On 03-10-2001, the ship Otterloo arrived at the port of Veracruz - Mexico, with 9 containers with plastic balls, departing on 20/10/2001.
26-10-2001: arrival at the port of Bluff in Nicaragua, heading to the port of Rama later in the same country, carrying 14 containers - armed (AK 300 boxes for a total of
3000 units and cartridge boxes Calibre 3493 7.62 X 39 mm, for a total of 5,000,000 units), departing on 03-11-2001, to the port of Colon Panama.
05-11-2001: arrival at the port of Turbo - Colombia, with 23 Containers, unloading the entire load at the premises of the company Banadex, departing on 07-11-2001, to the port of Barranquilla in Colombia.

Route of the weapon transportation:
The Otterloo boat docks are located in front of Port Turbo. Containers are carried on barges through the canal Zungo Banadex deposits. There, 23 trucks are loaded, which do not take the usual route of freight cargos heading to the city of Medellin, but prefer to take a route that takes twice as long. The trucks on their way pass through the municipalities of Turbo, Necoclí, Arboletes, Monteria and Planeta Rica, where they are intercepted illegally by the AUC.

Exhausted respective reports to the Attorney General of Colombia, arrest warrants were issued to people connected with the research done.
Upon receipt of such orders, seven people linked to arms trafficking were captured, among which were:
• Two officials of TDA.
• One Company Officer of Banadex in Section.
• One official of the Company SIA Customs Brokerage service.
• One Legal Representative of the company Inversiones Banoly.
• Two Merchandise Representatives.
The investigation proceeded with judicial investigation of different Army Brigades in Colombia, determining that weapons have been seized on Colombian territory in various operational procedures against the AUC and that this was related to the list of rifles sent by Nicaragua.

Among the countries mentioned were:
Mexico: The PF company based in Guadalajara Jalisco, appears as an exporter of plastic balls in containers. Among the crew of the ship Otterloo were six persons of Mexican nationality.

Guatemala: The corporation named GIR SA was the intermediary business for
the trade of the weapons.

Nicaragua: Country where the motorboat Otterloo charged 14 containers with weapons allegedly bound for Colon, Panama.

Panama: The company TIM INC, was the setter of the MV Otterloo. This country was as a recipient of the weapons allegedly traded from Nicaragua.

Colombia: The
BI company, based in Port Turbo (Antioquia), was in charge of importation of 23 containers with plastic balls.

Commentary and Significant Features

Research techniques allowed to detect the entry of cargo and establish the facts surrounding the case. Cooperation was received from various institutions and international and regional organizations, as well as from the countries involved.

However, many performances were subsequently dilated, and some facts and multinational component of the illegal actions impeded the investigation, culminating in the partly withdrawal of the offenses

Cross Cutting

Application of the Convention

Details

• involved an organized criminal group (Article 2(a) CTOC)
• occurred across one (or more) international borders (transnationally)

Involved Countries

Panama

Nicaragua

Mexico

Guatemala

Colombia

Investigation

Comments:

The data provided by the OAS were critical for the development of the investigation, as the countries that were involved and the list of weapons that had been sold could be determined, among other details of the firearms.

 

Defendants / Respondents in the first instance

Defendant:
HMM
Gender:
Male
Defendant:
HHRB
Gender:
Male
Defendant:
CCC
Gender:
Male
Defendant:
LACA
Gender:
Male

Charges / Claims / Decisions

Defendant:
HMM
Defendant:
HHRB
Defendant:
CCC
Defendant:
LACA
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