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Drug trafficker Rafael Caro Quintero, one of the most wanted drug traffickers in the U.S., is caught.

drug trafficker Rafael Caro Quintero

The Ministry of the Navy, through the Mexican Navy (SEMAR), informed this Friday, July 15, that after an operation carried out by the Attorney General's Office (FGR) in coordination with naval personnel, the arrest of drug trafficker Rafael Caro Quintero, one of the most wanted drug traffickers by the U.S., was achieved.

Mexican authorities said that the action derived from field and cabinet work, carried out since his release in 2013, which allowed the location of the drug lord in the municipality of San Simon Choix, Sinaloa, who was wanted by Mexican government security authorities, with two arrest warrants against him, as well as an extradition order to the United States.

Max, a Mexican Navy canine, was the hero in the story, as it was he who found Caro Quintero in the bushes, said the Mexican Navy. in a press release.

It is worth mentioning that the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) recognizes the alleged drug trafficker as the leader of a criminal group in this country and, since his disappearance, has offered up to 20 million dollars for him. 

Mexican authorities also reported that during operational activities carried out by the Mexican Navy, a Black Hawk helicopter crashed in Los Mochis, Sinaloa, leaving at least 14 marines dead, while another is receiving medical attention.

Likewise, the corresponding investigations will be carried out to determine the causes that could have caused the crash of the aircraft, which, they said, it is not known if it was related to the arrest of the alleged drug trafficker.

The Attorney General's Office explained that, in compliance with the provisional arrest warrant for extradition purposes issued by a federal judge in response to the request made by the Federal Public Prosecutor's Office (MPF), and with the presence of the Federal Ministerial Police (INTERPOL Unit), Caro Quintero was detained at the Altiplano Social Rehabilitation Center No. 1 in Almoloya, State of Mexico.

In this sense, he pointed out that once he was interned, he immediately notified the judge of the case of the compliance with the arrest warrant referred to so that said judicial authority could set a date and time for the corresponding hearing.

The response from U.S. officials was swift, with U.S. Attorney General Merrick B. Garland assuring that "there is no hiding place for anyone who abducts, tortures and murders U.S. law enforcement.

"We are deeply grateful to the Mexican authorities for the capture and arrest of Rafael Caro-Quintero. Today's arrest is the culmination of tireless work by the DEA and its Mexican partners to bring Caro-Quintero to justice for his alleged crimes, including the torture and execution of DEA Special Agent Enrique ?Kiki? Camarena," the official said. in a press release.

Garland announced that he will seek his immediate extradition to the United States so that he can be tried by U.S. authorities.

Garland explained that the immediate extradition of the drug lord to the United States will be sought "so that he can be tried for these crimes in the same justice system that Special Agent Camarena died defending.

Caro Quintero was one of the most wanted by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), in addition to Mexicans Ismael "El Mayo" Zambada, linked to the Sinaloa Cartel, and Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes, alias "El Mencho" and leader of the Jalisco Cartel - New Generation.

It should be noted that the arrested drug lord was known as one of the most important drug traffickers in the 80's, in addition to having been imprisoned in Costa Rica in the middle of that decade, due to the murder of DEA Agent Enrique Camarena Salazar and his pilot Alfredo Avelar?

After serving only 28 years in prison for various charges. Rafael was released on August 9, 2013 by resolution of the first collegiate court in criminal matters of the third circuit in Jalisco, under the argument that he should not be prosecuted in the federal jurisdiction for the murder of the agent?

Although a Mexican judge determined in 2009 that the drug lord was due 199 years in prison, by law he was only given a maximum sentence of 40 years, but a few days later a judge issued a provisional arrest warrant against him for extradition to the United States and on November 6 of the same year the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation overturned the court ruling that allowed him to leave prison in August. 

Thus, his whereabouts had been unknown since 2013. 

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