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Crime & Courts

Peru's Dynamite-Proof Cocaine Trade

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In this Sept. 19, 2014 photo, counternarcotics officers walk in a clandestine airstrip strewn with boulders, in the Apurimac, Ene and Mantaro River Valleys, or VRAEM, the world's No. 1 coca-growing region, in Junin Peru, Friday, Sept. 19, 2014. The boulders are used as a way to camouflage the airstrips from air observation. Security forces say that traffickers pay local villagers to keep the runways hidden and to repair them when they are cratered in counternarcotics operations. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
Rodrigo Abd / AP
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In this Sept. 19, 2014 photo, explosives are detonate by Peruvian counternarcotics forces on a part of a clandestine grassy airstrip in the Apurimac, Ene and Mantaro River Valleys, or VRAEM, the world's No. 1 coca-growing region, in Ayacucho, Peru. The dynamiting of craters by Peruvian security forces into clandestine airstrips cuts into profits but hardly discourages cocaine traffickers who net tens of thousands of dollars with each flight flown from these airstrips. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
Rodrigo Abd / AP
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In this Sept. 19, 2014 photo, soldiers sit, back dropped by an image of Jesus Christ embracing a praying soldier, inside a building at the Mazamari counternarcotics base in the Valley of the Ene and Apurimac and Mantaro River Valleys, or VRAEM, the world's No. 1 coca-growing region, in Junin, Peru. An average of about 4-5 small planes daily fly into Peru from Bolivia, picking up about 300 kilos each of coca paste worth about a third of a million dollars in Bolivia. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
Rodrigo Abd / AP
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In this Sept. 19, 2014 photo, clandestine airstrips are seen from a military helicopter in the Valley of the Apurimac, Ene and Mantaro River Valleys, or VRAEM, the world's No. 1 coca-growing region, in Pichari, Peru. The area has no radar coverage and the neighboring nations' air forces are limited so drug flights can only be intercepted on the ground. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
Rodrigo Abd / AP
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In this Sept. 19, 2014 photo, a soldier stands guard during the destruction of a clandestine airstrip in the Valley of the Apurimac, Ene and Mantaro River Valleys, or VRAEM, the world's No. 1 coca-growing region in Ayacucho, Peru. Peruvian and Bolivian officials have agreed during a meeting in La Paz to share information in real time on cross-border drug flights. They did not, however, divulge details. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
Rodrigo Abd / AP
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In this Friday, Sept. 19, 2014 photo, a soldier signals to his commander while standing inside a crater created by explosives planted by Peruvian counternarcotics forces on part of a clandestine grassy airstrip, in the Valley of the Apurimac, Ene and Mantaro River Valleys, or VRAEM, the world's No. 1 coca-growing region in Ayacucho, Peru. According to official data, Peru has blown craters into 132 clandestine airfields this year, up from 110 last year. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
Rodrigo Abd / AP
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