Bolivia cracks down on "Norwegian Cartel"
In a case sensationalized by the Bolivian press as a crackdown on a "Norwegian Cartel," a Bolivian national was sentenced to 20 years in prison last month, and two Norwegians to 13 years each on charges of attempting to smuggle 22 kilograms of cocaine out of the country. The defendants, all in their 20s, were arrested in May 2008 with cocaine hidden in their backpacks. Bolivian authorities say they were recruited as drug-runners by crime bosses in Norway, with promises of luxury vacations as well as payments of $1,500. (Los Tiempos, Cochabamba, April 22)
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