Norwegian flees drug charges in Bolivia

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One of three young Norwegian women, caught with 22 kilos of cocaine while leaving Bolivia two years ago, has skipped bail and made her way back to Norway, reported TV2 over the weekend.

Now Norway’s Foreign Ministry seems caught in the fray once again, after reports emerged Monday that she had received a new passport from local Norwegian consular officials in another name

The ministry in Oslo claimed the new passport was issued only after the local officials were told her original passport — which Bolivian officials reportedly had returned to her in December — “had been damaged” and that she had formally changed her name. Norwegian officials then felt she had the right to a new passport in the new name, and claim they alerted both Bolivian authorities and Interpol.

The defense lawyer for the two others charged in the case remain jailed in Bolivia, and he worries they’ll receive harsher treatment because the third woman ran off.

She’d been released from prison in October but still faced charges and was supposed to report in to Bolivian police every week. She now faces drug charges in Norway, but it was unclear whether that would satisfy the Bolivian authorities. The young women’s drug smuggling trial in Bolivia was due to start in April after several postponements.

Views and News from Norway/Nina Berglund
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