CARACAS, Venezuela – Carlos Ojeda Herrera, a Colombian wanted by the United States in connection with heroin-trafficking charges, has been apprehended by Venezuelan authorities in the state of Anzoátegui, Interior and Justice Minister Tarek El Aissami said. “President Hugo Chávez has issued an order to inform U.S. authorities immediately about this arrest and proceed with his immediate deportation,” El Aissami told state-run VTV television. “We will proceed (against Ojeda Herrera) in the same manner in which we have proceeded in recent years against (other) capos: arrest them and speedily (extradite them to) the country that is asking for them.” It marks the second major suspected drug dealer arrested by Venezuelan officials in less than a month, as suspected drug kingpin Omar Ramón De Rosario Puente was turned over to Dominican Republic authorities.
Drug bust in Mexico leads to huge seizure, two arrests
Mexican Federal Police officers have confiscated more than 900 kilograms of cocaine, heroin and crystal methamphetamine they discovered in boxes of detergent and cleaning supplies in the state of Chihuahua, officials said. Officials ordered a truck to stop after they observed it weaving out of its traffic lane on its way to Ciudad Juárez, a hotspot in the international drug trade, according to EFE. Police arrested two men, including a 32-year-old driver who allegedly tried to bribe police with 50,000 pesos (about US$3,800) for their freedom after 206 kilograms (453 pounds) of cocaine, nearly 16 kilograms (35 pounds) of heroin and about 702 kilograms (1,544 pounds) of crystal methamphetamine were found in 1,214 boxes of cleaning supplies, officials said. The seizure is another victory in counter-narcotics for Mexican President Felipe Calderón, as his administration has overseen the confiscation of 78.3 tons of cocaine, 4,390 tons of marijuana and 43.5 tons of chemicals used to produce synthetic drugs since he launched his attack on narcotics trafficking in December 2006, according to EFE.
Gunfight between Colombian drug gangs leaves six dead, one injured
A gunfight between rival gangs left six dead and one injured in the northwest department of Antioquia, Colombian officials said on May 27. The shootout in the city of Caucasia began when a group suspected of being led by Maximiliano Bonilla Orozco approached a ranch occupied by members of the Los Urabeños, Police Gen. Orlando Páez told RCN Radio. Five of the deceased have been identified as members of the Los Urabeños and the sixth was a ranch worker, Páez said. The man who was injured in the gunfight has not been identified, Páez said, adding a reward of up to $20 million pesos (US$10,000) is being offered for information about those who fled after the shootout. The U.S. State Department has issued a reward of US$5 million for information leading to the apprehension of Bonilla Orozco, who it suspects heads an international drug trafficking syndicate that pumps thousands of kilograms of cocaine into the United States from Colombia.