The Colombian government arrested 16 military personnel for links to organized crime and the narco-trafficking ring, Los Puntilleros, one of the country’s biggest criminal organizations.
The Minister of Defense Luis Carlos Villegas said the military members have been removed from their posts, accused of “various crimes” related to drug trafficking in San Andres Island.
Villegas said the government has brought “internal disciplinary” measures against 6,300 state security forces this year alone. In the national police alone 540 were found complicit in crimes and some were found guilty of homicide.
Some 927 police and 132 soldiers have been dismissed for various "irregularities," Villegas added.
According to the United Nations, Colombia was the region’s highest coca producer with the 46,000 hectares cultivated, and 866 tons of processed cocaine found.
San Andres, a small Colombian island in the Caribbean, has become a principal stop along the country’s drug trade route to sell in the U.S. and Europe.