Colombian drug cartel puts £53,000 price on dog’s head

Drug dealers put price on German Shepherd's head

The Urabenos (also known as the Gulf Clan), said to be Colombia's mightiest drug gang, has offered 200m peso ($70,000) to anyone who takes out the police sniffer dog named Sombra - which is Spanish for 'Shadow.' According to local media, Dario Antonio Usuga, the boss of the clan, was the one who put the hit on the six-year-old female German shepherd.

Sombra, which is Spanish for Shadow, has found almost 10 tons of the Urabenos' cocaine, which prompted the country's most powerful organized crime regime to put out a hit on the dog.

Sombra has achieved celebrity status in Colombia, emerging as the hairy, friendly face of the nation's deadly war against drug cartels.

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A Colombian drug gang has placed a bounty of more than $93,000 on the head of a police sniffer dog who brought in up to 10 tonnes of the group's cocaine haul. "Otoniel" is one of Colombia's most wanted criminals.

Since she was transferred in January, the canine sleuth has sniffed thousands of pounds of cocaine out of the dark, helping her handlers find the drug hidden in boxes full of sneakers and wooden necklaces.

"The fact they want to hurt Sombra and offer such a high reward for her capture or death shows the impact she's had on their profits", a police spokesperson said. "Not only to look for caches of illicit drugs but also, after her work is done, to de-stress, so to speak". Its influence expanded across the country around 2012, as it gained control of drug production zones and corridors in the north to traffic materials.

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Colombia is one of the world's leading producers of cocaine, with an output of around 910 tonnes per year, according to the US Drug Enforcement Administration.

"Our German shepherd, Sombra, has participated in nearly 300 operations", Col. Tito Castellanos, the deputy director for the anti-narcotics police, told Colombian news agency RCN.

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