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Colombian security forces capture ‘most-wanted drug lord, Otoniel

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Colombian security forces on Saturday captured the country’s most-wanted drug trafficker, Dairo Antonio Úsuga, aka Otoniel.

Otoniel, who is the leader of Colombia’s largest criminal gang, was captured by the army, air force, and police at his hideout in Antioquia province in the country’s North-West, close to the border with Panama.

The BBC reports that one police officer was killed in the operation that involved 500 soldiers supported by 22 helicopters.

The drug lord had used a network of rural safe houses to move around and evade the authorities, and did not use a phone, instead relying on couriers for communication.

READ ALSO: Mexican drug lord, Carrillo Fuentes jailed 28 years for organised crime

The government had earlier offered a $800,000 (£582,000) reward for information about his whereabouts, while the United States placed a $5million bounty on his head.

President Iván Duque in a televised video message expressed happiness at the capture of the drug baron.

He said: “This is the biggest blow against drug trafficking in our country this century. This blow is only comparable to the fall of Pablo Escobar in the 1990s.”

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