British teens accused of drug smuggling
Two British teenagers have been accused of trying to smuggle more than 14 pounds of cocaine from the West African nation of Ghana to Britain.
As part of a joint anti-smuggling operation between British and Ghanaian officials, Yetunde Diya and Yasemin Vatansever were arrested last week for allegedly attempting to smuggle the drugs in laptop bags, The Independent reported Sunday.
Their arrest Wednesday marked the most recent attempt to limit the drug trade in West Africa, which has become a problematic area, according to some authorities.
Interpol's assistant director for criminal organizations and drugs, Emmanuel Leclaire, said West Africa has become a major hub for the international drug trade.
"We're seeing traffickers taking small planes and adding extra fuel tanks to give them enough range to cross the Atlantic," the Interpol official said.
The British newspaper said the teenagers arrested as part of Operation Westbridge face a maximum of three years in juvenile detention if found guilty, a significant reduction from the 20-year prison sentence they could have faced if tried as adults. // Copyright 2007 by United Press International