Drugs in Agroexports: No Controls?

The latest discovery of drugs in a container of Costa Rican heart of palms which was destined for Europe, brings back to the table the problem of the lack of controls in customs offices.

Friday, June 16, 2017

The problem also centers around the fact that the different authorities contradict each other when it comes to explaining who carries out the processes for the inspecting containers entering and leaving the country and how. 

Crhoy.com reports that "... 'The Ministry of Finance said that the National Customs Service works with importation of goods, but said that the issue of exports in the field of drug control is carried out by the Ministry of Public Security."

"... Carlos Hidalgo, a spokesman from the Ministry of Security, was clear in pointing out that the department is not responsible for exports, but only works with preventive checks at border posts and these are carried out by the Drug Control Police (Policía de Control de Drogas or PCD in Spanish) and the Police Force."

Added to this the inefficiency in the handling of a donation made by the Chinese government of scanners for port inspections, which was made nine years ago. Marco Vinicio Jimenez, director of the State Phytosanitary Service, explained that the systems need repairing and that the technology is practically obsolete and is not adapted to present day needs, therefore there is a commitment from the Asians to modernize the equipment."

More on this topic

Drugs, Exports and Lack of Control

August 2018

An activity that generates nearly $1 billion a year in Costa Rica in exports is being seriously threatened by the infiltration of drug traffickers, who are taking advantage of loopholes left open by the government because it does not have an adequate system for checking containers and registering exporters.

The most recent seizure of 45 kilos of drugs that arrived in the United States in the corrugated bottom of 20 cardboard boxes of pineapples from San Carlos has once again set alarm bells ringing in the export sector, which has ceaselessly demanded that authorities to go back to the "in situ" review system of cargo, which used to be carried out before and stopped during the Solís administration.

Drugs in Export Cargo: And the Scanners?

September 2016

Another case of drugs found in cargo which came from Costa Rica highlights the imperative need to improve controls and implement the use of scanners at export ports.


How many more drugs have to be found in commercial export cargo before the authorities in Costa Rica put into operation the scanners which were donated by the Chinese government eight years ago?

Drugs Found Again in Exports from Costa Rica

August 2016

In a Coca Cola factory in France 370 kilos of cocaine were discovered hidden in a shipment of orange juice from Costa Rica.

The event has brought back to the table discussion in Costa Rica on the issue of implementation of controls to prevent export cargos from being used for drug  smuggling to Europe and the United States, the main destinations of Costa Rica's foreign trade.  

Fee for Fumigation at Honduras - El Salvador Border

October 2014

The government of Honduras has announced that it will continue spraying trucks from El Salvador, due to the presence of a pest, but without charging the fee of $10 as it has so far done.  

Fumigation of all trucks leaving the Salvadoran borders is essential since the presence of the pink hibiscus mealybug pest was detected in some shipments in recent weeks.

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