May 8, 2021

Drug cartel allegedly aided by top Mexican police commander, now in US custody

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By Carmen M. Llona, Brooke Singman Fox News

A former high-ranking commander in the Mexican Federal Police, charged by U.S. authorities with using his position to help a drug cartel, turned himself in to U.S. authorities in Chicago.

Ivan Reyes Arzate, who had been fired in November, has been charged with obstructing an investigation into the Beltrán Leyva brothers’ drug cartel in exchange for “personal benefit.”

Also known as La Reina, he is accused of telling cartel members that they were being investigated by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

“Reyes was the principal point of contact for information being shared between U.S. law enforcement and the Mexican Federal Police.  He first drew the attention of U.S. authorities in September 2016 while the investigation was active and ongoing,” the DOJ statement read.

The investigation is being conducted through the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) Strike Force, with assistance from local authorities and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Secretary of Homeland Security Gen. John Kelly testified before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on Wednesday, and was focused on securing the border, answering specific questions from lawmakers on illegal drugs and narcotics infiltrating the southwest border.

In the Kelly’s original testimony provided to Fox News, he said DHS can apply “lessons” learned from Colombia when it comes to defeating large cartels.

“In Colombia, for example, we learned that they key principles for defeating large cartels and insurgents are the same as defeating criminal networks: a strong, accountable government that protects its citizens, upholds the rule of law, and expands economic opportunity for all,” Kelly’s testimony read. “It taught us that countering illicit trafficking and preventing terrorism often go hand-in-hand, and that U.S. interagency cooperation, coupled with a committed international partner, can help bring a country back from the brink.”


The AP contributed to this report.

IMAGE: (Reuters)

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