Former Montenegro boxer charged over 22 tons of cocaine worth $1 billion
by FARUK IMAMOVIC | VIEW 601
The citizen of Montenegro Goran Gogic (43) was arrested when he tried to board an international flight from Miami International Airport. Reuters reports that Gogic was arrested when he tried to board According to the publication on the website of the United States Department of Justice, he is accused of smuggling more than 20 tons of cocaine, worth more than a billion dollars, which was seized during one of the largest cocaine seizures in America.
Gogic is a former heavyweight boxer.
According to the indictment and court documents, in the period from May 2018 to July 2019, Gogic conspired with others to distribute huge quantities of cocaine via commercial cargo ships.
Gogic allegedly coordinated with sources of cocaine in Colombia, crew members who transported tons of cocaine on commercial cargo ships on the high seas, and a network of port workers who transported and unloaded cocaine in Europe via the United States.
According to the indictment and court documents, they used the ship's cranes and nets to physically load the cocaine onto the ship. Once the cocaine was on board, the crew members would hide it in special shipping containers that they knew had enough space to hide large quantities of cocaine and for which they had double-forged seals.
They chose specific containers to be used to conceal the cocaine, based in part on the location and orientation of the containers, as well as the route and destination on board. That complex operation, it said, relied on access to each ship's crew, route, real-time positioning and geolocation data, and knowledge of what legitimate cargo was in each container.
They used workers who had access to European ports to secretly access and remove cocaine from shipping containers upon their arrival.
US law enforcement officers seized three of these shipments:
“The arrest and indictment of Gogic, a former boxer allegedly responsible for trafficking a staggering amount of cocaine, more than 20 tons, which he attempted to move through U.S.
ports, is a resounding victory for law enforcement,” stated United States Attorney Peace. “The meticulous planning by the defendant and his co-conspirators failed to take into account the federal agents whose hard work resulted in this body blow to the organization and individuals responsible for distributing massive quantities of cocaine”.
“Gogic, as alleged, is a major drug trafficker who, along with his criminal associates, is responsible for overseeing long-range narcotics transportation on container ships as well as the wholesale distribution of cocaine throughout Europe.
Today’s arrest sends a message to narcotraffickers worldwide that they are not free to hijack international maritime commerce with impunity,” stated HSI Special Agent-in-Charge Arvelo. “HSI, along with our partners, will continue to leverage our unique investigative authorities to aggressively pursue drug traffickers who seek to exploit legitimate industries”.
“A billion dollars’ worth of cocaine seized was a heavy hit for Gogic’s criminal network, but nothing heavier than his arrest last night,” said DEA Special Agent-in-Charge Tarentino. “As evident in this case, criminal organizations will go to various extremes to make a profit off the sale of poison.
Due to the hard work by local, state and federal law enforcement, 20 tons of poison was intercepted en route from Colombia to Europe. Gogic’s arrest underscores law enforcement’s commitment to bringing to justice those responsible for causing the most harm to our communities”.
Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Department of New York (DEA) Frank Tarantino said that the seized cocaine worth one billion dollars was a heavy blow to Gogic's criminal network. New York State Police First Deputy Superintendent Steven Nigreli said the arrest and indictment against Gogic speaks to the tremendous coordination between law enforcement partners to prevent individuals like Gogic from using our waterways to distribute illegal drugs around the world.
If found guilty, Gogic faces a minimum sentence of 10 years in prison to life in prison. A post on the website of the United States Department of Justice states that the charges in the indictment are allegations and that the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
Reuters states that according to online records, Gogic was a boxer from 2001 to 2012, that he won 21 matches, and that he lost four with two draws.