- Title: Ex Bolivian diplomat arrested in Argentina with nearly eight kilos of cocaine
- Date: 18th December 2019
- Summary: LA PAZ, BOLIVIA (DECEMBER 17, 2019) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) DEPUTY MINISTER FOR SOCIAL DEFENCE, JAIME ZAMORA, SAYING: "What has attracted our attention is that the former consul in Oran (Argentine city) has a strong presence in the MAS (Movement to Socialism) party in Tarija (Bolivian region), close to former president Evo Morales, where the former president Morales is (currently) based (in Argentina). Eight kilos (17 pounds) of cocaine was found." MEDIA PRESENTATION PRESENTATION TO MEDIA OF PHOTOS FROM CRIME SCENE (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) BOLIVIA'S DIRECTOR FOR THE SPECIAL ARMED FORCES IN ANTI-NARCOTICS, JAVIER MALDONADO: "The vehicle attracted the attention of Argentina's National Gendarmerie because the spare tyre was not in its correct position. That is why the gendarmerie checked the vehicle and found (the drugs) where the spare tyre should have been. Eight packages in the shape of bricks (were found) that tested positive for cocaine." OFFICIALS LEAVING NEWS CONFERENCE
- Embargoed: 1st January 2020 02:00
- Keywords: Argentina Bolivia Salta diplomat drugs
- Location: LA PAZ, BOLIVIA / SALTA DEPARTMENT, ARGENTINA
- City: LA PAZ, BOLIVIA / SALTA DEPARTMENT, ARGENTINA
- Country: Argentina
- Topics: Crime/Law/Justice,Crime
- Reuters ID: LVA002BAD8KSN
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Authorities in Argentina on Tuesday (December 17) arrested a former Bolivian diplomat after nearly eight kilos (17 pounds) of cocaine was reportedly found in a vehicle he was travelling in, according to officials.
Diego Vega Ibarra, Bolivia's former consul in Salta, Argentina, was arrested after eight brick-shaped bundles were hidden in the spare tyre compartment in the boot of his car. According to authorities, the packs later tested positive for cocaine.
Vega Ibarra was made a diplomat under former president Evo Morales, who is also in Argentina following a troubled election in Bolivia that was marred by allegations of fraud.
Speaking in La Paz, Bolivian officials say their Argentine counterparts had stopped the vehicle Vega Ibarra was travelling at a border region between the two countries after they noticed the car's spare tyre was not in it's correct place.
Officials report the drugs have a street value upwards of $200,000 US.
According to the 2019 World Drug Report, Bolivia is one of Latin America's bigger coca producers alongside Colombia and Peru.
(Production: Santiago Limachi, Monica Machicao, Paul Vieira)
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