Wednesday 3 March 2021

Scanner operators at APM Terminals among arrested for facilitating exit of container with cocaine

Five people were arrested Tuesday morning involved in a load of pineapple contaminated with cocaine to leave Costa Rica for the Netherlands last July

QCOSTARICA – Two women in charge of operating the scanners at the APM Terminals dock, in Moín (Limon) were detained for providing false information about a container loaded with fruit and containing 990 kilos of cocaine

The authorities in Costa Rica detained five workers from APM Terminals related to the shipment of the drug on Tuesday morning. Photo provided by Reiner Montero.

The drug hidden in the shipment of pineapple that left the Limon megaport was seized on August 17 in the port of Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

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Realted to the same case, three other employees of the port terminal were arrested on Tuesday morning.

The press office of the Public Ministry reported that the arrested took place during a series of raids carried out in Limón, Moín, Pocora and San Ramón de Alajuela.

Iimportant evidence for the development of the investigation and cash was seized during the raids by several judicial agencies, including the Organismo de Investigacion Judicial (OIJ) and the Drug Control Police (PCD).

The three men arrested are surnamed Herrera Valderramos (the carrier), Hadden Ulloa and Cerdas Fonseca, and two women identified as Garita Fernández and Gómez Pérez.

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“APM Terminals is collaborating with the judicial authorities after the arrest of people linked to our terminal in Moín. As a responsible company, we do not tolerate actions contrary to the law. As this topic is under investigation, we cannot comment further on it,” said the operator of the megaport in a statement.

The investigation

According to the judicial report, prior to July 30, the defendants had been contacted by people, not yet identified, linked to drug trafficking. It is presumed that these unknown persons recruited the suspects.

Police were able to determine that Herrera was in charge of transporting the 990 kilos of cocaine from Siquirres to the megaport.

After that, it was established that Hadden, who was the coordinator of the terminal gate entrance allowed the cargo to enter.

Once the truck was in place, it is presumed that the third man, Cerdas, allowed Herrera to park the container to be shipped.

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According to the evidence collected so far, the two women were in charge of the scanners, for which, apparently, they reported false data regarding the truck and container, allowing to leave the Limon port for Rotterdam, in the Netherlands.

On August 17, Dutch police seized the illegal drugs.

 

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