Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War

Drug Lord Extradited to Texas

Thursday, April 29, 2010 |

Alleged drug lord extradited to Texas after eight year fight to stay in Mexico.

The alleged head of a Mexican drug trafficking enterprise lost his eight-year battle to stop extradtion to the United States to face charges.

Juan Jose Quintero-Payan, 68, of Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, has been extradited to Texas to face four felony charges for drug and racketeering.

U.S Attorneys José Angel Moreno and John E. Murphy and Zoran Yankovich, special agent of the Drug Enforcement Administration, announced the extradition on April 28, 2010.

A San Antonio grand jury indicted Quintero, and a provisional arrest warrant was issued, in 2002.

“Quintero was arrested in Mexico. Quintero fought against his extradition for eight years,” said the announcement. “On Friday, April 23, 2010, Quintero was extradited by Mexico and transported to San Antonio in the company of U.S. agents.”

Quintero was ordered on April 26, 2010 by U.S. Magistrate Judge Pamela A. Mathy in San Antonio to remain in federal custody without bond pending further criminal proceedings.

“The successful extradition of Mr. Quintero-Payan shows that joint international efforts work and that the rule of lawlessness is ultimately subservient to the rule of law,” Moreno said.

Quintero is known as the leader of a “criminal enterprise whose operations spanned from South America and Mexico to the United States and the Cayman Islands,” according to the release.

“The indictment details the movement of more than $20 million dollars in United States currency into banks in California and Texas and other deposits into banks in New York and the Cayman Islands,” the announcement stated. “A network of real estate was allegedly acquired in Texas and California related to the drug enterprise’s operations to include ranches, airstrips and residences.”

Yankovich said, “Mexico’s continued cooperation in targeting significant drug traffickers is critical to our mutual efforts to protect the public from the negative impact of the drug trade.”

As part of the extradition request, “Mexico conditioned extradition on assurances that a sentence of life imprisonment would not be imposed.”

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