The latest setback to U.S. anti-narcotics efforts in Mexico came earlier this month, when the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) was forced to remove its flagship plane from the country for the first time in some 30 years.
According to a report by Reuters, Mexican officials revoked the plane’s parking space in a hangar at the Toluca airport about 25 miles outside of Mexico City. The plane, a Beechcraft twin-turboprop King Air, can carry about ten passengers and was often deployed for elite-level ops in Mexico and Central America.
More than 116,000 Ukrainian refugees have arrived in Italy since Ukraine was invaded by Russia in late February. To house them, Italian authorities have started to use properties seized from the mafia. Our correspondent in Italy, Natalia Mendoza, brings us the story.
Italy already had the second largest Ukrainian population in Europe before the war began. Now tens of thousands of Ukrainian refugees have arrived.
One of these is Tetiana, who fled the town of Bucha, 30 kilometres north of Kyiv, with her four children and her mother. “The fighting was intense. When the bombing started in our area, we would constantly hear missiles over our heads,” she says.
The man known as Otoniel is accused of smuggling tons of cocaine and assassinating police officers and civic leaders.
A man accused of leading a Colombian cartel was extradited to face federal drug-trafficking charges in Brooklyn, ending a yearslong effort to hobble an organization that a federal prosecutor said on Thursday smuggled an “outrageous” amount of cocaine into the United States.
Dairo Antonio Úsuga, more commonly known as Otoniel, led a force thousands strong. He was arrested in October and has long stood accused of carrying out assassinations of police officers and civic leaders.
Hernández Allegedly Partnered with Some of the Largest Cocaine Traffickers in the World to Transport Tons of Cocaine through Honduras to the United States
Juan Orlando Hernández, aka JOH, 53, the former President of Honduras, will make his initial appearance tomorrow, April 22, before Magistrate Judge Stewart D. Aaron in federal court in New York after being extradited today from Honduras. A federal court unsealed drug-trafficking and weapons charges today in a superseding indictment against Hernández.
The indictment charges that from at least in or about 2004, up to and including in or about 2022, Hernández, the former two-term President of Honduras, participated in a corrupt and violent drug-trafficking conspiracy to facilitate the importation of hundreds of thousands of kilograms of cocaine into the United States. Hernández allegedly received millions of dollars to use his public office, law enforcement, and the military to support drug-trafficking organizations in Honduras, Mexico, and elsewhere.
“The Justice Department is taking a comprehensive approach to protecting our communities and our country from violent crime,” said Attorney General Merrick B. Garland. “The Department is committed to disrupting the entire ecosystem of drug trafficking networks that harm the American people, no matter how far or how high we must go.”
“Juan Orlando Hernández, the recent former President of Honduras, allegedly partnered with some of the world’s most prolific narcotics traffickers to build a corrupt and brutally violent empire based on the illegal trafficking of tons of cocaine to the United States,” said U.S. Attorney Damian Williams for the Southern District of New York. “Hernández is alleged to have used his vast political powers to protect and assist drug traffickers and cartel leaders by alerting them to possible interdictions, and sanctioning heavily armed violence to support their drug trade. I commend the career prosecutors of the Southern District of New York for their tireless efforts to disrupt the entire illicit drug trafficking ecosystem, from street-level dealers to a former world leader, and everything in-between.”
Emma Coronel Aispuro, the wife of Mexico’s most notorious drug kingpin, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzmán,pleaded guiltyThursday to helping him run the powerful Sinaloa cartel.
Coronel was captured and arrested by U.S. officials as she arrived at Dulles International Airport in Virginia in February.
The former beauty queen appeared before a federal judge in Washington, D.C., on Thursday morning and pleaded guilty to participating in a conspiracy to distribute cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin and marijuana for importation into the U.S., according to the Justice Department.
She also pleaded guilty to one count of conspiring to launder narcotics profits and another count of engaging in illegal financial dealings related to her husband’s property.