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25.09.2006 General News

1,335 South Americans Invade Ghana

By independent
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Following the arrest of two Venezuelans at East Legon and the discovery of 588 kilogrammes of cocaine The Independent decided to conduct investigations to find out how those drugs managed to get into the country.

The Independent stumbled on a piece of information during investigations that indicated that Ghana is currently harbouring about 1,335 South Americans here, some of whose activities could be linked to that development.

Sources close to the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) hinted newsmen that, some of them came to transact genuine businesses, while others are engaged in shady business deals even though records on them are genuine.

A highly placed source close to the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service told newsmen that, the South American countries are where the bulk of cocaine and certain other hard drugs emanate from before spreading out worldwide.

Colombia, the country most dreaded for production of cocaine and its trafficking has 189 citizens in Ghana while Argentina, one of the world's most celebrated soccer nations, also has about 124 of its nationals in Ghana.Immigration sources also hinted that Mexico, another football nation in South America also has 94 citizens in the country, while Bolivia, also in the same corridor, has 82 of its nationals currently in the country.

Sources also established that Peru has 78 nationals in Ghana with Uruguay following with 68 citizens. Venezuela has 60 citizens in the country, Chile, 5, and the total number of Guyanians is 55.

Ecuadorians in Ghana stands at 49, Paraguay has 26 nationals here and French Guiana and Suriname each has 13 nationals currently residing in the country. The investigations revealed that some of the countries are major drug producing and transit countries with others having major chemical processors.

Others in the list, investigations further established, are branded as major money laundering countries. A police source told newsmen that, “The situation is dangerous in that these people could be doing anything covertly to ensure a boom of the drug business here.”

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