Colombia confirms death of drug kingpin 'Megateo'

Undated picture of Victor Ramon Navarro Serrano, aka "Megateo" (AFP Photo/)

Bogota (AFP) - A wanted Colombian drug lord who had a $5-million price on his head from the United States has been killed in a military operation, authorities said Friday.

Victor "Megateo" Navarro, a former guerrilla fighter accused of running a cocaine supply route along the Colombian-Venezuelan border, was first reported killed in August. But official confirmation finally came in a tweet from Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos.

"Recent information from the armed forces confirms: Megateo killed. HUGE BLOW. Congratulations! Criminals are either brought to justice or end up buried," Santos wrote on his Twitter account.

The governor of Norte de Santander department, Edgar Diaz, said Navarro was killed during a joint operation by the army and police.

Navarro, 39, was a former guerrilla fighter for the Popular Liberation Army (EPL), a leftist rebel group that disbanded in the 1990s under a peace agreement.

He refused to disarm and continued fighting with a band of EPL renegades. According to authorities, he eventually turned to drug trafficking and gained control over a portion of the supply route out of Colombia, the world's top cocaine producer.

The US State Department accused him of running an organization that processed and shipped tons of cocaine to the United States, Canada, the Dominican Republic and Europe, as well as operating a multi-million-dollar money-laundering network.

Colombia had a $700,000 reward out for information leading to his capture or killing, in addition to the US reward.