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BRIEF

Bolivia: 85% Seized Assets Returned to Drug Traffickers

BOLIVIA / 16 MAY 2011 BY VANESSA PAZ LECOMPTE EN

Eighty-five percent of goods seized from suspected narco-traffickers in Bolivia are later returned, according to a report by the government.

Bolivia's Vice-Minister of Social Defense, Felipe Caceres, criticized the situation as a waste of "the efforts and the risks run by our anti-narcotics police," reports Eju.

Carceres said that the government was working on new legislation to tighten measures against drug trafficking with help from the United Nations. The law would mean that traffickers' assets will quickly be seized and sold, with he money passing into government coffers.

"We have to hit and to damage the assets of narco-traffickers, so that in this way every day their illegal activity will diminish,” said the official.

Bolivia's government also backed a plan, proposed at a anti-drug summit in Paris, where G8 countries along with narcotics-producing nations agreed to create an anti-drug fund using assets seized from traffickers.

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