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Six tons of cocaine taken from jungle lab

March 7, 2009 at 4:33 PM

BOGOTA, March 7 (UPI) -- Authorities in Colombia seized nearly 6 tons of cocaine and cocaine base in a raid on a jungle laboratory, officials said.

The operation in Colombia's southwest allegedly was run by the paramilitary Black Eagles, the Los Angeles Times reported Saturday.

The newspaper noted the laboratory was located in a coastal zone that has become a battleground for drug traffickers, right-wing militias and leftist rebels.

The laboratory reportedly was raided by the "Junglas" special anti-drugs force, using Black Hawk and Huey helicopters.

The Times said police found 4 tons of refined cocaine, and an additional 1.7 tons of cocaine base, which is convertible to more than 1 ton of pure cocaine.

The lab complex had its own power plant and housed 50 workers. The facility was capable of producing an estimated 5 tons of pure cocaine a week, authorities said.

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