Monday, February 8, 2010

Milenio Cartel Drug Lord Sentenced To 47 Years In A Mexican Prison

Armando Valencia Cornelio aka "Maradona", or "Juanito"

Drug lord eluded the U.S. DEA since 1999, was arrested in Guadalajara, Jalisco in 2003 by the Mexican military police and the Mexican Attorney General's Office

By H. Nelson Goodson
February 8, 2010

Mexico D.F., Mexico - On Sunday, a press release from the Mexico's Attorney General Office announced that Armando Valencia Cornelio, "Maradona", or "Juanito",  the Milenio Drug Cartel (Millennium/Jalisco Cartel) leader was sentenced to 47 years and 6 months in prison. He was also fined over $13 thousand, but it was not confirmed pesos or dollars.
The Mexican Attorney General's Office (PGR) said that a coordinated effort by the Mexican military police and their office were able to capture Valencia Cornelio on August 15, 2003 in Guadalajara, Jalisco. He eluded capture from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) since 1999.
The prosecution was credited to the Federation of Special Investigative Unit of Crimes Against Health and the Attorney General's Office of Investigative Crimes (SIEDO).
Valencia Cornelio was sentenced in the 1st Federal Penal District Court of the State of Mexico. He was convicted for committing crimes against health, cocaine drug trafficking and for organized crime.
His drug trafficking mainly operated in the Mexican states of Jalisco, Michoacán and had a major distribution network of cocaine smuggling into the U.S., according to the Mexican Attorney General's Office.
Valencia Cornelio conspired with Colombian drug kingpin Felipe Salazar Espinosa aka "Hoover" in the early 2000's until his capture and conviction on July 2007 in the U.S. Salazar Espinoza was extradited on August 2006 from Colombia. He was convicted of cocaine importation and money laundering charges.
Both Valencia Cornelio and Salazar Espinosa were responsible for importing ton-quantities of Colombian cocaine, from Colombia through Mexico and into the U.S. and ending up in the City of New York, on a weekly basis. They were money laundering between $12-14 million in narcotic proceeds per week during the period of 2002-2005.
U.S. DEA seized a 1.3 ton cacaine shipment destine to the U.S. concealed in the arm of a crane in Panama on July 2005. (John P. Gilbride, DEA Special Agent in Charge. July 18, 2007)

Mexican Attorney General's Office (PGR) press release in Spanish at Internet link:

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