By Associated Press - Wednesday, September 20, 2017

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A federal prosecutor says a case against four alleged overseas cocaine traffickers will be tried in Ohio’s capital city under a new initiative.

Ben Glassman is the U.S. attorney for the southern half of Ohio that includes Columbus. He announced charges today against three men from Ecuador and one from Mexico.

The U.S. Coast Guard took the men into custody Aug. 18 in the Pacific Ocean about 475 miles northwest of the Galapagos Islands.

The government also seized 25 packages it says the men threw overboard which contained about 1,580 pounds (717 kilograms) of cocaine worth $25 million.

Glassman says the local prosecution is part of an effort to expand his office’s role fighting drugs. He says the Justice Department coordinates how prosecutions are meted out.

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