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Rise in Uruguay Marijuana Seizures Presents Challenge to Reforms

An increase in marijuana seizures in Uruguay raises questions about whether criminal groups are taking advantage of delays to the implementation of the country’s landmark 2013 legalization law to establish a firm market share.

According to Uruguay's El Pais, Uruguayan authorities seized 4,305 kilograms of marijuana in 2016, an increase from the 2,521 kilograms seized in 2015, and the 1,457 kilograms of marijuana seized in 2014. 

In addition to the overall increase in seizures, authorities have noticed a shift in the routes used to traffic marijuana into Uruguay. On January 14, Uruguayan police seized 320 kilograms in Rocha, along the Brazilian border, which authorities told El Pais was one of their largest seizures ever in that state. There have also been notably large seizures of drugs compared...

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