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Brazil is the main corridor for cocaine in the world, according to a T.V. report.

The Globo brazilian T.V. program O Fantastico investigated the route of cocaine for a month and discovered how foreign women are lured and the drama of their families living abroad.

This year, the United Nations (UN) has pointed out Brazil as the main corridor for cocaine in the world. One of the routes most commonly used by gangs/cartels begins in Colombia, passing through São Paulo and the brazilian Northeast, then West Africa and finally the cocaine ends in Europe.

In the female prison “Auri Moura Costa”, located in the Metropolitan Region of Fortaleza, the situation of women drug traffickers are mixed. Out of 420 women, 49 are foreigners,  arrested while trying to leave Brazil with illegal drugs like cocaine. Twenty women are from Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde, Africa.

According to police, the gangs have attracted international women from Cape Verde and Guinea-Bissau because the two countries are marked by so much misery and because these are Portuguese-speaking African nations. In addition, the airport of the brazilian city of Fortaleza is considered more vulnerable for illegal trafficking than those of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.

“These women often are moved by emotion. They fall in love with a man. For this man, she does everything. Even drug trafficking. Often, she is coerced to use her body for trafficking, and they promise her a sum of money “says José Laurindo de Bento Araujo, coordinator of the criminal system of Ceara.

“There is no legal figure in Brazil that could help these women to serve their sentences abroad. If the crime was committed in Brazilian territory, the penalty will be enforced in Brazil, “explains the lawyer Auricélio Paiva.
In April, Vitalina Fernandes Correia, 26, and Dulce Helena dos Santos, 28, left Cape Verde, and reached Sao Paulo, Brazil.

There, they received from a drug dealer about eight pounds of cocaine.

Then the two took a flight to Fortaleza, where the arrest occurred. Vitalina and Dulce receive the equivalent of U.S. $ 10 000 each.

“Is our debt at  home, the situation of our family, only my husband is working. I wanted to help my husband in some way. Just what went wrong “, Vitalina regrets.

They will get four years in jail. “We, mules, we did not gain anything. Who wins is the same drug dealer. What we earn is suffering, pain, shame of the family, shame of our friends. This is not worth it, no. I regret very much, “says Dulce.

The drug that Vitalina and Dulce tried to bring to Africa would go to Europe. It is estimated that gangs distribute through this route between 200 and 300 tons of cocaine a year on the eruopean continent.

O Fantastico asked several of those imprisoned women to write messages to their families in Africa. Then the journalists Eduardo Faustini and Alberto Fernandez went to Africa to talk with relatives of the inmates.