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The Search Bloc (Spanish: Bloque de Búsqueda) was the name of three different special operations units of the National Police of Colombia (Policía Nacional de Colombia). They were originally organized with a focus on capturing or killing highly dangerous individuals or groups of individuals.
First Search Bloc
The original Search Bloc was created in 1992 by President Cesar Gaviria with the sole objective of apprehending drug lord Pablo Escobar and his associates. Its original commander was Colonel Hugo Martinez.
Members of Search Bloc received training from the Colombian army and were specially selected for being impervious to police corruption from the drug cartels. Throughout its mission, Search Bloc faced many obstacles such as a spy within the group and allegations of collaboration with anti-Escobar vigilante groups such as Los Pepes, which would have included vigilantism within Search Bloc pertaining to suspicious deaths of Escobar's subordinates.
Escobar was killed on December 2, 1993, in a shootout with members of Search Bloc. After dismantling his Medellín Cartel, the Search Bloc was transferred to Cali to find and shut down the structure of the Cali Cartel.
Second Search Bloc
Search Bloc was revived in 2004 to root out cocaine and heroin traffickers in southwest Colombia. The mission of the new Search Bloc was to take apart the Norte del Valle cartel and arrest its leader, Diego León Montoya Sánchez, which it did successfully in 2007.
Third Search Bloc
The original Search Bloc has featured prominently in the Netflix original series Narcos, which portrays the rise and fall of Pablo Escobar. In the series the Bloc is headed by a character named Colonel Horacio Carrillo, who critics have claimed was loosely based on Colonel Hugo Martinez; however, Martinez is introduced as a separate character in Season 2.
- Captured nine presumed members of the Águilas Negras Colombian Army Accessed 20 August 2007.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Police of Colombia.|
- Mark Bowden, Killing Pablo (a copy of Bowden's serial articles in The Philadelphia Inquirer is available here : )[dead link]
- Jane's Jane's Terrorism & Security Monitor Mar 01, 2004
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