Mexican soldiers seized more than 14 metric tons of marijuana in two operations in the northern states of Sinaloa and Tamaulipas, the Defense Secretariat said.
“In the scope of the Mexican government’s comprehensive strategy against drug trafficking and organized crime,” military personnel on Friday secured a warehouse in Culiacan, Sinaloa (northwestern Mexico) in which 981 packets of marijuana with a weight of 9.5 metric tons were found, the secretariat said in a statement.
It said the seizure was made after an explosion at the property during work to install hidden compartments inside containers to be used to smuggle the drugs. A person’s dead body was discovered at the warehouse, the statement added.
In another statement, the secretariat said troops on Wednesday located an abandoned property in the town of Ciudad Camargo, Tamaulipas, where they seized 590 packets of marijuana with a total weight of 4.7 metric tons.
In both cases, the drugs were turned over to judicial authorities, the secretariat said.
President Felipe Calderon has given army soldiers the lead role in the battle against Mexico’s numerous heavily armed, well-funded drug cartels.
That struggle has led to captures of top mob bosses and record narcotics seizures, but drug-related violence has skyrocketed and claimed some 50,000 lives since he took office in late 2006.