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News (Media Awareness Project) - US FL: Panamanian Indicted In Smuggling Case
Title:US FL: Panamanian Indicted In Smuggling Case
Published On:2000-09-12
Source:Miami Herald (FL)
Fetched On:2008-09-03 08:57:41

Friend Of Country's President Charged In Heroin Conspiracy

Oscar Osorio Barraza Once Ran For Congress In Panama.

A former Panamanian congressional candidate and friend of President
Mireya Moscoso has been indicted in Miami federal court on charges he
was involved in a conspiracy to smuggle heroin and the popular club
drug ecstacy to the United States.

Oscar Osorio Barraza was among six indicted Friday, including a man who
identified himself on wiretaps as the second-in-command of the airport
in Panama City and a woman from Holland who once wrote a book calling
herself the ``godmother'' of a Dutch criminal syndicate.

Barraza, who once ran unsuccessfully for congress in Panama, is charged
with brokering an ecstacy between an undercover agent of the Drug
Enforcement Administration and Tetje Moear of Holland.

In her book, Moear describes her role at the top of a criminal
organization responsible for murders, corruption and massive drug deals
in the 1980s.

None of the six is currently in U.S. custody.

According to the indictment, the heroin was to be shipped from Turkey
to Holland by co-conspirator Murat Candanpolat, of Turkey. The ecstacy
was to be manufactured in Holland at a laboratory owned by alleged co-
conspirator Antonio Vincenso Brusamolin, of Italy.

Blas ``Toto'' Velasquez, who described himself in recorded
conversations as the No. 2 man at the Panama City airport, was to used
his influence to help smuggle the illegal drugs both in and out of
Panama, according to an indictment signed by Assistant U.S. Attorney
Richard Gregorie. The sixth person indicted in the conspiracy was Abdul

Barraza was recently arrested by Panamanian officials, as were
Brusamolin and Moear, who are awaiting extradition to the U.S.
Velasquez has not been arrested. Candanpolat was arrested in Holland.

The case was the result of a five-month joint investigation by the DEA,
U.S. Customs Service, Miami-Dade Police, Miami Police, Internal Revenue
Service and Dutch police.
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