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DEA, HSI Crackdown on Mexican Drug Trafficking Rings

— September 21, 2020

U.S. law enforcement intercept loads of cocaine, heroin, and firearms in Mexican drug cartel investigations.

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has captured Mexican drug traffickers in New York drug after seizing nearly three tons of cocaine. Those arrested in the ring included Raymundo Montoya-Lopez, Abraham Alfonso Garcia-Montoya, and Felizardo Diaz-Hernandez.

DEA Special Agent in Charge Raymond P. Donovan explained, “Law enforcement thwarted cartel plans to saturate the American drug market with cocaine by intercepting over three tons of cocaine heading towards American towns.  This international enforcement operation has saved lives and reemphasized law enforcement’s commitment to keeping America safe from drug trafficking, drug abuse, and violent crime.”

Earlier this month, the Mexican Navy received a tip to track a vessel traveling northwest through the Caribbean Sea toward the city of Chetumal and the village of Mahahual.  The boat was intercepted, they boarded and searched it and ultimately found the cocaine and men inside.

DEA, HSI Crackdown on Mexican Drug Trafficking Rings
Photo by Nareeta Martin on Unsplash

Acting Manhattan U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss explained, “As alleged, these defendants are responsible for the attempted importation of more than three tons of cocaine into the United States.  Thanks to the work of the DEA and the Mexican Navy, the shipment was interdicted, and the defendants are in custody and facing federal prosecution.”  Montoya-Lopez, Garcia-Montoya, and Diaz-Hernandez were charged with conspiring to import cocaine into the United States and issued a mandatory minimum sentence of ten years to life in prison.

In July, Atlanta resident Antonio DeShawn Daniels, also known as “Freckleface Shawn,” was indicted on federal charges in connection with the largest heroin seizure in Georgia’s history, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office of North District of Georgia.  Authorities found 170 kilograms of heroin, 10 kilograms of cocaine, eight kilograms of marijuana, more than $1 million in cash, and 41 firearms in total.

“That’s a ridiculous amount of heroin. I was stunned,” Robert J. Murphy, special agent in charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s Atlanta Field Division. “Several kilos would be a big seizure in the past.  I never in my entire 30-plus years of law enforcement would have ever expected to see this much heroin seized here in Atlanta.”

Federal agents revealed Daniels was connected to the Jalisco New Generation Cartel in Mexico, one of the most powerful drug trafficking rings in Mexico and the U.S., particularly in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, and Atlanta, according to the DEA.

Homeland Security Investigations New York Special Agent in Charge Peter C. Fitzhugh said, “Cartels continue to operate with no regard for laws or human life, trafficking tons of deadly narcotics across the border and using bribery and intimidation to further their reach with government officials.”

State Police Superintendent Keith M. Corlett added, “The combined efforts of federal, state and local law enforcement, along with authorities in Mexico, have put this operation out of business and disrupted the transport of thousands of kilos of cocaine to our streets.  This case continues our commitment and partnership to identify, arrest and prosecute anyone who tries to sell these dangerous drugs in our communities.”


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