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Saturday, July 17, 2021

Invisible Drug Kingpin 'Don Lucho' Killed in Colombia

"Socalj" for Borderland Beat; InSight Crime

One of Colombia's foremost drug traffickers and money launderers has been assassinated in Bogotá, leaving important unanswered questions about his own criminal past and who might have been after him.
On the morning of July 16, Luis Agustín Caicedo Velandia, alias “Don Lucho,” was shot dead by two gunmen in Teusaquillo, a district in the north of the Colombian capital, Bogotá. One of his lawyers was also killed.

Caicedo Velandia was a highly successful drug trafficker and money launderer who shipped tens of thousands of kilograms of cocaine to the United States and Europe. His relatively low profile saw him considered as one of Colombia's "invisible" drug kingpins.

It is believed he laundered up to $1.5 billion in drug proceeds between 2005 and 2009, a feat even honored by the Guinness World Records. He was captured in Argentina in 2010 and was extradited to the United States where he was sentenced to 20 years in prison for trafficking cocaine. He was released in 2019 after collaborating with authorities and it is believed he returned to Colombia.

Don Lucho reportedly entered the drug trafficking world around 1994 after leaving the Colombian Attorney General Office's Technical Body of Investigation (Cuerpo Tecnico de Investigacion - CTI) amid a scandal regarding his alleged participation in the escape of a Puerto Rican drug trafficker. Authorities in the United States also trace his criminal career back to at least the mid-to-late-1990s, eventually rising to become a key part of a criminal organization known as the El Dorado Cartel, El Cartel de Bogotá, or simply the Junta, within which Don Lucho was a master of logistics.

Caicedo Velandia was a close ally of Daniel Barrera, alias "El Loco Barrera," who became one of Colombia's principal drug traffickers by forging links first with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia - FARC), and later with the right-wing paramilitary army known as the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia - AUC). Caicedo Velandia worked with a similarly extensive list of contacts, which helped him move drugs through Central America, Mexico, Venezuela, and the Caribbean.

During his time in the United States, Caicedo Velandia cooperated extensively with authorities to secure a reduced sentence, providing them with key information to dismantle organized crime rings.

The true extent of Caicedo Velandia's involvement in the international drug trade remains a mystery. Despite earning a fortune reaching into the hundreds of millions of dollars and having connections to the likes of Joaquín Guzmán Loera, alias "El Chapo," he led his drug trafficking empire discreetly. Such links were discovered by chance when a cocaine-laden submarine he sent from Colombia to the United States on behalf of the Sinaloa Cartel was intercepted.

They would become even clearer when Caicedo Velandia was included on the witness list during the landmark trial of Guzmán Loera, although he did not testify. His knowledge of the region's criminal dynamics allowed him to hand over a list of 126 names to US authorities, including members of his own criminal organization and those of his rivals, as well as drug trafficking routes and the locations of safe houses.

It is possible that the 2012 arrest in Venezuela of his old ally, "El Loco Barrera," was made possible due to information provided by Caicedo Velandia himself. It is still unknown why he was gunned down in Bogotá, but his extensive criminal connections and his cooperation with US authorities are likely to have made him plenty of enemies. Don Lucho was not able to remain invisible forever.

Colombian police also recently arrested another so-called "invisible," Guillermo León Acevedo Giraldo, alias "Memo Fantasma", as covered by Borderland Beat. He also hid in the shadows, for years shielding his drug trafficking empire and connections to a number of criminal groups. 

SourceInsight Crime

34 comments:

  1. Why would he return to Colombia after snitching?

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    Replies
    1. Because people like him think they are the shit and untouchable I guess? Turns out nobody is,
      no matter your wealth and power

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    2. 11:10 because he thought he was still an invisible.

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    3. Because he wasn't a USA national or citizen and didn't have a visa to be in the country. A simple drug trafficker, nothing more or less, that completed his negotiated punishment and was returned to his native country

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    4. 11:10 If were in that predicament of being in prison for 20 years, you would be singing like a bird, to get your sentence reduced, so yes SNITCHING is worth bit.

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    5. Sure snitching is worth it if you don't value your conscience, friends, morals, reflection in the mirror and life itself. And, as witnessed above, this man lost at least one, if not all, of the aforementioned.

      Delete
  2. Por lo ke veo kreo ke ellos si son narcos de verdad , no como los carteles mexicanos sanguinarios de hoy en dia.

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    Replies
    1. En Mexico hay un narco que nunca ah pisado la cárcel le dicen el M pero talvez sea leyenda

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    2. 11:17 Que? Pero que barbaro apoco apollas a ese narco de basura? No sabes todo el daño que ese asco de hombre causo.

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    3. Y todos los Mayitos en la prision. En Colombia hay 100 "mayos" y sus familias libres.

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    4. Ese anciano miado pone dedos no es el bueno de mexico. Ha mandado a todos sus hijos a la cárcel por no pisar el. Eso no es ser hombre diría yo

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  3. Who knows, maybe he missed his girlfriend

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  4. Damn i remember watching the documentary about his arrest. He was really one of the top dogs in the whole world when it came to the coke game

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  5. Did he start his career with one of big cartels of Colombia?

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    Replies
    1. 12:05 read the article…

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    2. Behind Mencho is somebody calling the shots. Behind the leaders names WE know is an 'invisible' somebody bigger. He was one of those 'invisibles'. At Least this is my opinion which many may disagree with

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    3. Theres no invisibles in mexico they all like their corridos. And behind mencho was el cuini and mencho snitched on him.

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  6. Luis Agustín snitched!

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  7. I bet memo fantasmas arrest had something to do with this.

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    Replies
    1. Tying up loose ends?

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    2. I was thinking the same thing, wasn’t Memo arrested 2 weeks ago in Colombia? These 2 were big time

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  8. Memo sends his regards

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  9. More info on what I was talking about. This is about the invisible Memo, for anyone unsure who he is MS.h
    https://insightcrime.org/news/video-memo-fantasma-uncovered-two-year-investigation/

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  10. Word is memo fantasma had him taken care of

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    Replies
    1. Why they dont even work together. Most likely he either wanted to be a top dog withing the bogota cartel and soeone disagreed or he was killed for snitching when he was busted.

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  11. This guy was after memo fantasma may be the post powerfull cartel boss in the world. He was busted and paid millions to colombia and few million to usa and did about 10 years and was back in colombia but he also had to give up something and most likely this is payback. Hes involvement in the dorado cartel was no mistery. He was the top boss of the dorado cartel and el loco was the top enforcer and there was a third man Alberto Lozano an emerald businessman.

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  12. Chapo SNITCHED..

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  13. “Every dog has his day”
    - Tony Montana

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  14. In Michoacán their are lots of invisibles , this is why you only hear of a few of the drug lords, but if you do your research you’ll come to find that their are many many pesados in Michoacán, but they live by the code, unlike other states who glamorize it by posting all their “achievements “ on social media and fueling their egos w fake plastic women , exotic animals, and fantasy corridos. in Michoacán you’ll know who the heavies are when you go to the fiestas en diciembre... they’re all over the place ,jalando the banda, riding their horses , driving sick whips and buying rounds and food for everyone.. when REAL mafiosos come around you’re not scared , you’re full of joy and happiness, cuz the party about to start poppin.. FACT CHECK

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  15. As always…you’ll never hear about the real bosses and leaders that control it all

    ReplyDelete

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