U.S. Releases Drug Cartel Leader, Mexico Rearrests Him
Mexican authorities rearrested on Monday one of the seven brothers who ran the notorious Mexican Arellano Felix cartel that used to move tons of drugs from Mexico and Colombia to the United States.
15-year prison sentence for laundering tens of millions of dollars in illicit drug proceeds.Because he cooperated with authorities, the U.S. deported Eduardo Arellano Felix after he served more than half of his
But as soon as he crossed the border between Texas and Mexico, he was arrested again for his alleged involvement in organized crime and other charges related to drug trafficking, according to a statement from Mexico’s Public Prosecutor.
Along with his brothers, he ran the notorious Tijuana cartel before most of them were either arrested or killed and the trafficking was taken over by other organized crime groups, mainly the Sinaloa and Jalisco cartels. Only two of the brothers are not wanted.
Arellano Felix is the last of four brothers to be targeted by U.S. prosecutors for leading what was once among the world’s most violent and powerful multi-national drug trafficking organizations,” according to U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
Eduardo Arellano Felix was first arrested at his Tijuana home in 2008 and extradited years later to the United States to face racketeering, money laundering and narcotics trafficking charges, according to the U.S. Justice Department.
“The indictment alleges that the leadership of the Arellano Felix Organization (AFO) negotiated directly with Colombian cocaine-trafficking organizations for the purchase of multi-ton shipments of cocaine, received those shipments by sea and by air, in Mexico, and then arranged for the smuggling of the cocaine into the U.S. and its further distribution throughout the U.S.,” the Justice Department stated in 2012.
The Arellano Felix clan allegedly made hundreds of millions of dollars from drug trafficking. Once they would secure the money, they would smuggle it back to Mexico.
Eduardo Arellano Felix, who is a medical doctor, also known as “El Doctor”, admitted in his plea agreement that “he was a senior member of the AFO,” according to the FBI.
“He also admitted that he laundered hundreds of millions of dollars in drug trafficking proceeds and used some of the income to pay AFO members to commit crimes; to buy firearms, ammunition, and vehicles; to travel on AFO-related business; to pay bribes; and to purchase drugs,” the statement said.
Two of the brothers remain in U.S. prisons.
Benjamin Arellano Felix was arrested in 2002, and Francisco Javier Arellano Felix in 2006. They are serving for racketeering, drug trafficking and money laundering crimes. Benjamin was sentenced to 25 years in prison, while Javier is serving a life term, according to the FBI.
Their fourth brother, Ramon, known as the cartel’s enforcer, was killed in 2002 in a shootout with the police.
The oldest of the Arellano Felix brothers — Francisco Rafael — was killed in October 2013 while celebrating his 64th birthday. A shooter disguised as a clown came to the party and shot him dead.