Police Arrest Cocaine Kingpin Wanted for 3 Decades

Rocha passed 5 tons of cocaine a month through Brazil alone, police there estimated.Brazilian police arrested an infamous drug kingpin who evaded authorities for three decades and underwent plastic surgery to change his appearance.He allegedly headed up a network that includes producing cocaine in the jungles of Bolivia, Colombia and Peru and distributing it on the continent as well as the U.S. and Europe.From there, they said it would be carried in secret compartments in specially adapted trucks to Brazil’s big cities or for shipment overseas.He is also accused of being one of the main suppliers to the violent drug traffickers that hold sway in large areas of Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.”He led a normal social life, he was not anxious about being arrested, he knew he would not be recognized – he looked about 20 years younger”, Secco was quoted as saying, referring to da Rocha’s face-altering surgery.Spokesman Elvis Aparecido Secco said that Rocha’s efforts to transform his face had made their investigation “complex and hard”.Local journalists shared images online that showed his transformation.South America’s most wanted drug lord has been caught after 30 years on the run, according to Brazilian police.Rocha was arrested in Sorriso, in the western state of Mato Grosso, on Saturday, a police statement said. The police, however, believe that da Rocha’s personal assets are worth at least $100 million and will seek them in the second phase of the operation against the drug kingpin.Suitcases of cash, weapons and phones were found during the raids.While ruthless drug dealers are a constant and visible presence in Brazil’s favelas, the wholesale – and far more lucrative – end of the trade is largely hidden.