Mexican President justifies the release of Kingpin targeted by the United States

Mexico City (AP) — Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador defended a 2013 ruling that released one of the most desired drug trafficking organizations by US authorities on Wednesday, but the Mexican Supreme Court Later determined that it was a mistake.

Rafael Caro Quintello walked freely while sentenced to 40 years in prison for the torture murder of Enrique “Kiki” Camarena, an agent of the US Drug Enforcement Administration in 1985, and then a violent drug trafficker. Seems to have resumed its role as.

Caro Quintero is at the top of DEA’s most wanted list and is rewarded with $ 20 million for his capture.

Lopez Obrador said Wednesday that the legal appeal that led to the release of Caroquintero was “justified.” Probably because the drug trafficking organization was not verdicted in the prison in 2015. Of US pressure.

“After he went out, they had to look for him again, because the United States demanded that he should not be released, but the appeal was legally justified,” Lopez said. Obrador said.

Presidential spokesman Jesús Ramírez said, “The president said it was a legal anomaly that the judge did not verdict Caro Quintero 27 years later, but he did not defend his release.” Stated.

Despite the verdict, the Mexican Court of Appeals initially determined that it came from the wrong judge.

In August 2013, the Court of Appeals overturned Caroquintero’s 40-year ruling on the killings of Camarena and Mexican government pilots. The panel argued that state courts should oversee the case, not the federal case, and ordered his immediate release from the largest prison.

The Mexican Supreme Court stated that Camarena was a registered U.S. government agent and therefore his killing was a federal crime and was properly tried, invalidating the order to release him a few months later. did. An arrest warrant was issued to Caroquintero, who had been hiding since his release.

His late-night release angered the US government and surprised Mexican prosecutors. The prosecutor was not notified until hours after it was done.

This issue is a nuisance for Lopez Obrador, who has publicly stated that the Mexican government is no longer interested in detaining drug trafficking organizations. In 2019, Lopez Obrador ordered the release of Obidi Guzman, the son of imprisoned drug king Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzman, to avoid bloodshed.

Show how important this case, the search for drug trafficking organizations, is to the Mexican government, even if given false information about why Caroquintero was released in 2013, more than five years before the president took office. There seems to be. It remains a top priority for the United States.

Since his release, Caroquintero has allegedly established alliances with other cartels, established operations in northern Sonora, and robbed Guzman’s son and Sinaloa Cartel of territory.