Local September 3, 2013 | 7:15 am

Authorities suspect Dominican military link to busted cocaine lab

Santo Domingo.- Investigators are on the lookout for other members , including military, of a drug trafficking network that operated a cocaine lab in a farm raided by police at San Cristobal (south), the first of its kind ever found in Dominican territory.

The ring of Dominicans, Colombians, Venezuelans and Curacao nationals forged ties with members of the Armed Forces during its operations which encompassed the coasts from Azua in the west to Santo Domingo province in the east, from where all of the processed drugs were sent abroad.

The authorities acknowledge however that it’s difficult to specify the number of shipments of base and cut cocaine which the ring smuggled into the country, sent by Colombia’s Norte del Valle Cartel.

Calderon Rijo

The ring managed to set up such a strong structure that despite the December 2012 arrest of one of its key leaders after a high speed chase at sea, it continued its operation.

According to outlet eldia.com.do, the arrest of Jose Calderon Rijo was the result of his indiscretions in public places, and was apprehended with 10 packets of cocaine, though authorities suspect he hurled 800 kilos overboard.

Calderon Rijo "La Araña” (the spider) also appeared at the National Drugs Control Agency’s (DNCD) radar along with other members of his organization when Peravia (south) province senator Wilton Guerrero revealed the smuggling of 1,200 packages of cocaine and the subsequent execution of a Naval Intelligence (M -2) agent for allegedly notifying his superiors about it.

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