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U.S. PUSHING FOR EXTRADITION OF 3 BOLIVIANS

In its first formal request for the extradition of alleged Bolivian cocaine traffickers, the U.S. government has asked that three Bolivians be sent to the United States for trial.

The Bolivian government has previously turned over former Interior Minister Luis Arce Gomez and another trafficker to U.S. authorities, but without following extradition procedures.Arce Gomez is now serving a 30-year sentence in Miami for cocaine trafficking.

The three whose extradition is being sought have been indicted in southern California. They are Asunta Beatriz Roca, Blanca Suarez de Roca and Rafael Roca Suarez - the sister, mother and brother of Jorge Roca Suarez, who was jailed in Los Angeles last year.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency alleges that the Roca Suarez family controlled the largest cocaine processing and trafficking operation in Bolivia.