BOGOTA, Nov. 22 (UPI) – Colombian police said 22 suspected ”Clan of the Gulf” drug gang members have been arrested in the country’s Meta, Guaviare and Vichada states.

The men were arrested as they attempted to expand the gang’s territory. Among them are two allegedly high-ranking members of the gang.

“We will not rest until we destroy this emporium of organized crime,” Colombian National Police Gen. Jorge Hernando Nieto said in a statement.

The “Clan of the Gulf” is led by a man known as Otoniel, whom Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said is one of the main enemies of the government. Colombian police said the gang was also attempting to extend drug-smuggling routes to Russia.

The two alleged high-ranking members — identified as “JJ” and “Veterino” — were sent by Otoniel in attempts to recapture territory previously lost.

“These two men led drug trafficking from Vichada, Meta, Guaviare, Casanare and Cundinamarca to Panama, Guatemala, Mexico, United States, Spain, Holland, Italy, England and Russia,” Colombian police said.

In the operations, five rifles, two shotguns, two 9mm pistols and 10 grenades were seized, along with ammunition and equipment for the weapons, police said.



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