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ARGENTINA | 22-02-2019 07:37

Drug-trafficking arrests totalled 64k during Macri gov't, says Security Ministry

Security and the fight against drug-trafficking were major promises of the Macri campaign during the 2015 elections. 

Government action against drug trafficking reached "record levels" during the first three years of the Mauricio Macri administration, according to data released this week by the Security Minister.

From December 2015 to December 2018, federal security forces carried out 59,479 operations targeting alleged drug trafficking rings, with police arresting 64,093 people. Described as record-breaking by the Ministry, these figures equate to 53 operations per day and at least one arrest per operation.

Authorities seized close to 450,000 kilos of marijuana, 27,000 kilos of cocaine (including base products), and 467,000 kilos of synthetic drugs, the Security Ministry reported in its 'Argentina Free of Drug Trafficking' report.

'ARGENTINA FREE OF DRUG TRAFFICKING'

The report outlines the hard data behind one of the government's most lauded portfolios.

For instance, the average 398 kilos of marijuana that the Security Minister decommissioned daily during the last three years equates to US$ 673 million, according to the report. "With that money, 170 primary schools could be built in Buenos Aires province", the report suggested, adding that from 2016 to 2018, the amount of decommissioned marijuana rose by 51 percent.

When it came to cocaine, security forces seized an average daily of 23.7 kilos, whose total value was estimated at US$ 267 million; while comparatively, the amount of decommissioned cocaine rose 54.7 percent in the same period.

Among synthetic drugs like amphetamines, ecstasy and LSD, security forces seized 414 units per day, or "an amount of pills that could fill 2000 marmalade jars".

Security and the fight against drug-trafficking were major promises of the Macri campaign during the 2015 elections. 

Macri's Security Minister Patricia Bullrich enjoys the president's full support and her perceived successes and popularity have even prompted speculation she will run with him in 2019 as his candidate for vice president.

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