US and Colombian authorities have seized 6.4 million pounds of marijuana and arrested almost 500 people in the most successful international marijuana crackdown to date, Attorney General William French Smith announced.
The 14-month ''Operation Tiburon'' - the Spanish word for ''shark'' - resulted in the arrests of 495 people by US authorities. It was coordinated by the US Drug Enforcement Administration, the Coast Guard, the Customs Service, and law enforcement agencies in Florida, the Gulf states, the East Coast, and Colombia.
Unofficial estimates put the marijuana's street value at more than $500 million. Colombia is the source of about 75 percent of the marijuana smuggled into the United States.