Three Mexican suspects arrested in early September in the Caribbean Sea off the coast of Quintana Roo on board of a vessel heading to the US city of New York have been charged “with conspiring to import almost three tons of cocaine into the United States”, the US Department of Justice said in a press release.
The suspects, identified as Raymundo Montoya-Lopez, 45, Abraham Alfosno Garcia-Montoya, 31, and Felizardo Diaz-Hern, 39, were arrested on 1 September by the Mexican Navy on a boat that was observed moving at high speed in an unusual way, the navy said in a press release.
📄#PressRelease by @SEMAR_mx | As a result of joint intelligence collection gathered by @SEMAR_mx and @SEDENAmx, it was possible to seize 74 packages containing a product similar to cocaine (weighing approximately 3 tons) in Mahahual, Quintana Roo.— Embassy of Mexico in the US (@EmbamexEUA) September 2, 2020
Here more details: pic.twitter.com/1r4yNutXB9
LOOK: The Mexican Navy seized 2.9 tons of cocaine east of Mahahual, Quintana Roo.— Bloomberg QuickTake (@QuickTake) September 3, 2020
According to a report from the Navy, three suspects were arrested in the operation pic.twitter.com/zfS5mtdzJ0
“As alleged, these defendants are responsible for the attempted importation of more than three tons of cocaine into the United States,” acting Manhattan US Attorney Audrey Strauss said in a statement. “Thanks to the work of the DEA [US Drug Enforcement Administration] and the Mexican Navy, the shipment was interdicted and the defendants are in custody and facing federal prosecution.”
The DoJ said that the New York Police Department (NYPD), along with the New York office of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) assisted the Mexican Navy and the US DEA in the seizure of the cocaine shipment.
“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,” according to a DEA special agent in charge, Raymond P. Donovan.
An HSI New York special agent in charge, Peter C. Fitzhugh, declared that “Three more alleged drug trafficking defendants will now face justice and three tons of cocaine will not reach our communities.”
If convicted, Montoya-Lopez, Garcia-Montoya and Diaz-Hern, are expected to face a minimum 10 years in prison and a maximum sentence of life in prison, according to Fox 5 New York.