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Colombia to take legal action against Walmart over cocaine-themed sweater

Translated by
Barbara Santamaria
Published
today Dec 12, 2019
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A cocaine-themed festive sweater listed by a third-party on Walmart’s Canadian site has sparked fury in Colombia for its “offensive” product description. 

Walmart.ca


A Colombian government agency has threatened to take the American retailer to court over the blue Christmas sweater, which features a snowman in a Santa outfit in front of three lines of what appears to be cocaine. 

The sweater is emblazoned with the words ‘Let it snow’, and presented with a description that read: “Santa really likes to savor the moment when he gets his hands on some quality, grade A, Colombian snow.”

Camilo Gómez, director of Colombia’s National Agency for Legal Defense of the State, said the agency will seek monetary compensation from Walmart for the harm caused by the listing, and if the retailer fails to comply, it will take it to court.

The money will be donated to foundations supporting police officers who have been victims of drug trafficking and to fund a campaign to promote Colombia’s legal goods.

Walmart’s Canadian subsidiary issued an apology, saying it was sorry “for any unintended offence.” The offensive garment has been pulled from the company’s website and all stores.

Colombia has spent the past decade trying to clean up its image and global reputation as a cocaine hotspot. In 2008, the country was considered one of the most dangerous in the world, but its political and economic landscape has changed since then, and Colombia was recently named in the United States Tour Operators Association’s  top 10 places to visit in 2020 ranking.

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