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Judge declares mistrial in drug-trafficking case

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge declared a mistrial Thursday in the cocaine trafficking trial of the most senior commander of Latin America's largest rebel group to be captured.

The U.S. hoped a conviction would support its stand that the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia is both a terrorist organization and a violent drug cartel.

But jurors said they could not reach a verdict against Ricardo Palmera, the latest stalemate in the government's case. Prosecutors indicated they would seek a retrial of Palmera, also known by his nom de guerre, Simon Trinidad. The Justice Department did not comment on the mistrial.