FEATURE COLOMBIA COCAINE.
TO MATCH STORY BC-COLOMBIA COCAINE - A peasant worker chops coca leaves with a rotary cutter in a shed in the middle of an illegal plantation of coca leaf, the raw material for cocaine, in a remote rebel-held corner of southern Colombia. Coca leaf is the economic mainstay of this region along the Caguan River. The cost of river transport makes growing legal produce unprofitable forcing pesants to turn to illegal cash crops. The peasants process coca leaves with cement, gasoline and sulfuric acid to get a semi-processed powder known as cocaine base. Drug dealers then buy the powder and refine it into pure cocaine. Picture taken 28DEC99.