Colombia: Top Rebel Trafficker Slain

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) - Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos
says troops have killed a top FARC rebel who supplied Mexican
traffickers with cocaine and managed finances and arms dealings for
the guerrillas' powerful Southern Bloc.

Santos told reporters that Olidem Romel Solarte Ceron, alias "Oliver Solarte," was killed Monday in a joint forces operation near San Miguel, a town bordering Ecuador.

The 39-year-old Solarte was wanted by the United States on drug trafficking charges.

His importance to Latin America's last surviving leftist rebel army was discovered in electronic messages found in computers belonging to Raul Reyes, the FARC leader Colombia killed in a cross-border raid into Ecuador in 2008 not far from where Solarte was said to have fallen.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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