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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

West African Coastal Fishermen become Drug Mules

29th July, 2008

Fishermen in Africa are increasingly turning to drug and people trafficking to boost their meager incomes as fish stocks dry up.

The UN Office on Drugs and Crime has said:
  • large boats are heading from Latin America to African islands, where drugs are transferred into many smaller fishing boats which proceed along the coast to unload their cargo in the Gambia, Senegal and Guinea-Conakry.
  • Guinea Bissau has increasingly become a transit hub for organised criminal networks trafficking drugs from Colombia, Venezuela and Brazil through West Africa to Europe.
  • The UN Office on Drugs and Crime has said several hundred kilograms of cocaine go through the area each week.
  • The Bijagos archipelago is said to be an ideal place for landing large quantities of cocaine, due to its geographical configuration, which makes it easy for boats to travel without detection.
  • Apart from the drug trade, local fishermen say while they run at a loss when fishing, they can earn up to US$720 for each person trafficked northwards toward Europe.

The Rest @ Albuquerque News
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