Tools here used to create those neat packages of coke

Ministerio de Gobernación, Policía y Seguridad Pública
Police officers inspect a hydraulic press used in the fabrication of packages of cocaine. Photo below is of a design that could be pressed into the kilogram packages.

Every trade has its tools, and for dope smugglers there is the need to place cocaine in those neat, rectangular packages that weigh just a kilo.

So when agents of the Policía de Control de Drogas raided a drug packaging operation, they found ahydraulic press and a series of design stamps that would be pressed into the face of the packages to designate origin.

They also found 50 pieces of wood exactly the size of a kilo of cocaine, suggesting that there is not much honor among drug smugglers. Agents speculated that the wood would be mixed with kilo packages of cocaine.

The organization that agents said they broke up Tuesday specialized in ending cocaine out of Costa Rica hidden in objects such as books or in the stomach of compliant couriers, agents said.

The destinations were mainly the United States and Holland. One person already is in Dutch custody, agents said.

The security ministry said that the investigation began a year ago when someone telephoned a tip to a confidential drug line, 1176.

Anti-drug agents identified the leader of the organization by the last names of Reyes Lozano, a Colombian national.

Couriers related to this case were detained last May 15 and Jan. 23. The man detained this year carried more than half a million in U.S. currency. He was nabbed in Nicaragua.

Agents said they found books addressed to locations in Europe that has been placed in the Correos de Costa Rica mail system. That was last October. The books had hollow sections filled with cocaine.

Agents were only able to confiscate 57 grams of cocaine in a raid Tuesday. There were other types of drugs, including marijuana. They also confiscated vehicles and firearms.

In all, six persons were detained Tuesday. Four are Colombian and two are Costa Rican. These arrests are in addition to those of couriers.

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