Mexican military forces captured Rafael Caro Quintero (a notorious drug lord) who was responsible for the torture and death of an American drug enforcement agent in 1985.
According to a statement by the Mexican navy, Caro Quintero (69) was taken into custody after Max, a bloodhound-type search dog, found him hiding in shrubland near San Simon in Sinaloa. This was part of a joint operation between the navy and the attorney General’s office.
According to the statement, 14 people were killed when a Blackhawk helicopter carrying 15 passengers crashed in the area of Los Mochis. According to reports, the only survivor was seriously injured.
Social media photos showed the wreckage in a field.
According to the navy, the helicopter was involved in an accident. The cause of the accident is still unknown.
Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, Mexico’s President, tweeted that the helicopter crashed just before it landed after he had supported those involved in the capture of Caro Quintero. He stated that the crash would be investigated.
The navy released footage of Caro Quintero’s arrest. It showed him with his face blurred in jeans, a soaking blue shirt, and a baggy, khaki jacket. He was held by two men in camouflage uniforms, equipped with assault rifles.
Caro Quintero was a major supplier of heroin, cocaine, and marijuana to the US during the late 1970s. He rose to prominence when he co-founded the Guadalajara cartel which was one of Latin America’s most powerful drugtrafficking organizations in the 1980s.
After 28 years of imprisonment, he was released in 2013 by a Mexican judge who overturned his 40 year sentence for the 1985 kidnapping & murder of Enrique “Kiki”, Camarena, an agent of the US Drug Enforcement Administration.
The Supreme Court however upheld the sentence. Caro Quintero was then spirited away in a waiting car.
He turned underground and is believed to have returned to drug traficking, launching bloody turf wars in Sonora’s border state.
These events were filmed in 2018 Netflix series Narcos Mexico.
Caro Quintero was listed on the FBI’s most wanted lists, and a $20m (PS16.9m!) reward was offered for his capture.
The US. The US government welcomed the arrest and promised to expedite its request for his extradition.
Juan Gonzalez, White House senior Latin America advisor Juan Gonzalez, tweeted that “This is enormous.”
Attorney General Merrick Garland stated in a statement that there is no hiding place for anyone who tortures or kidnaps American law enforcement officers.
“Today’s arrest marks the culmination of the tireless efforts of DEA and Mexican partners to bring Caro Quitero to justice. He is accused of committing a series of crimes including the execution and torture of DEA Special Agent Enrique Kiki’ Camarena.
“We will immediately seek his extradition to the United States in order for him to be tried for the crimes in which Special Agent Camarena died fighting.”
The Mexican president claimed he doesn’t want to detain drug lords, and prefers to avoid violence. However, the arrest came just days after Lopez Obrador had met with Joe Biden at the White House.
On Twitter, Mr Obrador stated that the navy would investigate the causes of the helicopter crash.
He claimed that it was carrying military personnel, who were supporting the team that had arrested the kingpin.