KINGSTON, Jamaica (CBS/AP) Over a thousand Jamaican police and soldiers have launched a major attack on the Kingston slum where alleged drug lord Christopher "Dudus" Coke is believed to be hiding in order to escape extradition to the United States.
Coke, who is considered to be one of the world's most dangerous drug lords by the U.S. Justice Department, has been indicted in New York on drug and arms trafficking charges
However, Coke's band of heavily armed gangsters, known as the "Shower Posse," is believed to be harboring him in a public housing complex. The posse has a reputation for showering their enemies and innocent bystanders alike with bullets, reports The Miami New Times.
As the violence spread to other areas of the community, security forces turned their attention to Coke's camp in the Tivoli Gardens Monday afternoon. Backed by helicopters, they stormed through barbed- wire barricades into the warren-like Tivoli Gardens neighborhood and met fierce resistance, reports the BBC.
Many of the people fighting on behalf of Coke consider him to be a community leader, says the BBC. They claim that Coke provides money to parents for their children's schooling, buries dead family members, and supports the impoverished citizens of Kingston.
Authorities say two police officers have been killed and at least six wounded since the government of Jamaica declared a state of emergency Sunday. At least one Jamaican soldier was shot in dead during Monday's fighting.
MORE ON CRIMESIDER: