The United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) applauded the extradition of former governor of the Mexican state of Quintana Roo, Mario Villanueva Madrid, to the United States as an international collaboration.
Villanueva Madrid, who is currently in a Manhattan courthouse, faces charges for accepting millions of dollars from the cartel of Juarez in exchange for protecting the movement of over two hundred tons of cocaine to the United States. He has also been charged with laundering almost nineteen million in drug proceeds through accounts at Lehman Brothers in New York and elsewhere. According to La Crónica de Hoy, the accusations maintain that presumed drug traffickers Alcides Ramón Magaña and Jesús Albino Quintero Meraz reached an agreement with Villanueva Madrid under which he would receive 400,000 to 500,000 dollars for every drug smuggling operation that went through Quintana Roo.
Preet Bharara, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, attributed the drug violence faced by Mexico to people like Villanueva Madrid, accusing him of administering a virtual “narco-state.” In a news release by the DEA, Preet Bharara was quoted as saying: “The seeds of today’s violent turmoil in Mexico were first sewn over a decade ago by alleged criminals like Mario Villanueva Madrid…by allegedly corrupting his powerful office for profit, Villanueva Madrid permitted the Juarez Cartel to pump 200 tons of poison through Mexico and onto American streets.”
Mulvey, Erin. “Former Governor of Mexican State Extradited For Conspiring To Import Hundreds of Tons of Cocaine and Laundering Millions of Dollars In Bribe Payments Through Lehman Brothers.”U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. May 10, 2010.