Caro Quintero arrested after nine years on the run

▲ This image released by the FBI shows the wanted poster for Rafael Caro Quintero.Photo App

Gustavo Castillo, Ruben Villalpando and Cristian Diaz

Reporter and Correspondents

Newspaper La Jornada
Saturday July 16, 2022, p. 4

After almost nine years of being a fugitive from national authorities, and since 1985 identified as one of the main targets of US justice, drug trafficker Rafael Caro Quintero was reapprehended in the municipality of Choix, Sinaloa.

After his capture, the Mexican authorities expeditiously processed his extradition to the United States; however, during the night, the Attorney General’s Office (FGR) reported that Caro Quintero will remain in custody at the Federal Center for Social Readaptation (Cefereso) number 1, in Almoloya de Juárez, where he will be notified of the arrest warrant for of extradition and during a jurisdictional hearing the claimed will be made aware of what the authority determines in this regard.

Caro Quintero became a target of US justice since 1985 for being one of the perpetrators of Enrique’s murder. kiki Camarena Salazar, a member of the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) who was executed in February of that year in Guadalajara.

He was born in October 1952 in Badiraguato, considered the cradle of drug trafficking in Mexico; He is noted as one of the historical capos for having participated in the founding of the Guadalajara cartel, which gave rise to most of the large criminal organizations that currently operate in national territory.

The Secretary of the Navy-Navy of Mexico (Semar) announced that the arrest was carried out in coordination with the FGR, based on intelligence work that had been carried out since 2013, and that two arrest warrants were served on his against, as well as an extradition order to the United States.

According to federal sources, the capo was hiding in a ranch, and when he noticed the arrival of the federal authorities, he tried to flee through the undergrowth of the area, while some of his escorts were arrested (until the closing of this edition it would have been officially reported how many guarded it).

The also called Capo of Capos “It was located in the bushes by a canine element, named Maxwhose search and rescue training allowed his location, having been made available to the FGR.”

As for Enrique Camarena Salazar, originally from Baja California, Mexico, he became an undercover DEA agent and with the support of Alfredo Zavala, an aviator pilot who worked for the Ministry of Agriculture, discovered the El Búfalo ranch in September 1984, in the state of Chihuahua, which had an extension of a thousand hectares, in which more than 700 day laborers worked and more than 10 thousand tons of marijuana were stored.

That discovery caused the leaders of the Guadalajara cartel, an organization in which Caro Quintero was one of the bosses, to order – according to the investigations of the time – that the DEA agent and the pilot be deprived of their liberty and later killed in the city of Guadalajara. Their bodies were discovered a month later in the town of La Angostura, in Michoacán.

Due to persecution by members of the Guadalajara cartel, Caro Quintero fled to Costa Rica, where he was arrested in April 1985.

Six criminal proceedings were opened against him. The way in which he was released in 2013 was due to the fact that federal courts, based in Jalisco, dismissed four of said processes; that is, they annulled the sentences imposed in the trials for crimes against health and for the murders of four people, including those of Camarena Salazar and Alfredo Zavala, considering that he had been tried by an incompetent authority.

The capo was released on August 9, 2013, but a new arrest warrant was issued in 2015. Until yesterday, Caro Quintero was a fugitive from justice and the US government offered a $20 million reward for information leading to his death. arrest.

During the time he was a fugitive – according to reports from the intelligence agencies of the Mexican government – ​​Caro Quintero returned to his drug trafficking activities and operated with the Juárez cartel and its armed wing – identified as The line– to seize areas of Sonora that are under the control of New peoplea cell of the Sinaloa cartel.

According to the extradition treaty signed between Mexico and the United States, it is appropriate to hand over Caro Quintero to the United States justice system.

The arrest became public shortly after two in the afternoon – central time in the country – and high-level sources from the Mexican government reported that the procedures were being carried out for his delivery to the United States justice system, for which he was transferred to the northern border. .

However, after 9:00 p.m., the FGR announced that he would be transferred to Cefereso number 1, and that it will be a federal judge who sets the date and time for a hearing in which compliance with the extradition request is made official and determines his death. legal status.

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