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Panama / Noriega / Honduras #319773

CBS Evening News for Friday, Feb 12, 1988
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(Studio: Dan Rather) Panamanian general Manuel Noriega's indictments mentioned. United States officials reported fearing Honduras also involved in smuggling drugs into US. Report introduced.

(NYC: Richard Schlesinger) Honduran military reported being suspected of drug smuggling for years Noriega's indictments noted lending credibility to suspicions. [Senator John KERRY - believes drug cartel has moved into Honduran military] Juan Ramon Matta Ballesteros reported being one of world's biggest cocaine dealers. Matta noted living openly in Honduras. United States noted wanting Matta for murder of American drug agent. Matta's ties with top Honduran officials noted. [MATTA - (thru translator) denies ties with army.] Ex- Panamanian official Jose Blandon reported telling Senator For. Relations Committee that drug cartel has bribed Honduran military officials. [BLANDON -(thru translator) explains Honduran situation.] Suspected leader of Colombian drug cartel Jorge Ochoa reported arrested while driving Porsche registered to Honduran colonel Car's expense noted. Situation's sensitivity reported due to Honduran facilitation of United States aid to Nicaraguan Contras. President Reagan noted facing conflicting policies.

Rather, Dan;
Schlesinger, Richard

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