Colombian Leader of Drug Gang Arrested in Argentina

By Dialogo
April 16, 2012

A Colombian citizen suspected of leading an international gang of drug traffickers was arrested as he tried to leave Argentina for Uruguay, Security Minister Nilda Garré announced at a press conference on April 11.

The detainee was identified as Gustavo Adolfo García Medina, and the arrest took place on the international bridge that links the Argentine city of Gualeguaychú with the Uruguayan city of Fray Bentos.

“He’s an important figure” and was in charge of the warehouse in the locality of Lanús (on the southern outskirts of Buenos Aires) where 280 kilos of packaged cocaine were found in fine furniture on Friday, ready to be exported to Europe and the United States.

The drugs were seized amid a total of 78 searches, in the course of which 25 individuals were arrested, including 11 Colombian and two Spaniard nationals.

On April 9, Garré announced that García Medina’s sister had also been arrested: Mónica García Medina, a naturalized Argentine citizen of Colombian origin, and a sergeant in the Buenos Aires provincial police.

She said that the investigation that made it possible to dismantle the gang originated with a request by the Colombian police to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency to investigate the activities of Colombian drug boss Daniel “El loco” [“The crazy one”] Barrera’s four ex-wives in Argentina.

The minister revealed that the gang “laundered” the money obtained from drug trafficking by purchasing land in the province of Buenos Aires and property in gated communities and the exclusive Puerto Madero neighborhood of the Argentine capital.

She also announced that around 80 individuals and 40 firms that may have links to the organization are under investigation.