War on Drugs: Day of Reckoning

As Noriega prepares to stand trial, Washington braces for embarrassing disclosures -- but no one expects Panama's ex-dictator to go free

It is just after 8 a.m. on Sept. 23, 1985. Ken Kennedy, assistant special agent in charge of Miami's Drug Enforcement Administration office, is cruising down I-75, the Everglades Parkway, in his big blue Olds Delta 88. Over his two-way radio, Kennedy hears the squawk of an Air Force Black Hawk helicopter that is tracking a drug-laden plane from Colombia. The dope runner decides to land his plane on an unfinished section of I-75, not far from where Kennedy happens to be. "The copter guys are yelling, 'We have him!' " recalls Kennedy. "And I'm looking everywhere trying to find this...

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