Corruption · Organized Crime · Transparency & accountability

Mexico’s former security minister found guilty on all counts for drug trafficking

02/24/2023 (written by abrizuela) – On February 21, 2023, Mexico’s former security minister and head of law enforcement, Genaro García Luna, was found guilty of all charges for which he was tried in the state of New York. (El País) According to a press release by the U.S. Department of Justice, García Luna was charged with “engaging in a continuing criminal enterprise that includes six drug-related violations, international cocaine distribution conspiracy, conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute cocaine, conspiracy to import cocaine, and making false statements.” In the statement, the Department of Justice announced that García Luna will serve a minimum of 20 years in prison.

Source: El País

The trial of García Luna marks the first time a former Mexican official has been brought to trial in the United States, and the first time a former Mexican official has been charged for drug trafficking and organized crime. (El País) The month-long hearing took place in the Eastern District of New York in Brooklyn. The prosecutor’s office introduced the testimonies of 26 witnesses, most of whom were former drug bosses. (Telemundo) The former drug bosses claimed to have paid bribes of millions of dollars to García Luna in exchange for the aid and protection of the Sinaloa Cartel. The bribery occurred when García Luna was serving as a public official for Mexico from 2001 to 2012 and was responsible for spearheading the country’s fight against organized crime. (Telemundo). According to witnesses such as Sergio Villarreal Barragán, better known as El Grande, García Luna and other corrupt government officials played an integral role in expanding the Sinaloa cartel’s territory. Assistant Prosecutor Saritha Komatireddy claimed “It is impossible for the cartel to have expanded as it did without the support of the Mexican government.” (El País) While García Luna declined to testify throughout the course of the trial, his wife, Lina Cristina Pereya took the stand to defend their state of their finances. (BBC)

The spokesperson for Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, Jesús Ramírez Cuevas, took to Twitter to praise the decision and criticize former Mexican President Felipe Calderón. (BBC) In a Tweet, Ramírez Ceuvas stated “Justice has arrived for the former squire of Felipe Calderón. The crimes against our people will never be forgotten.” Given García Luna’s direct line of contact with the United States as a confidant, his betrayal endangers the trust upon which the bilateral relationship between the two countries are based. (El País)


Halpert, Debusmann. “Mexico’s ex-security minister Genaro García Luna convicted of drug trafficking.” BBC News. February 22, 2023.

Camhaji, Elías. “Genaro García Luna, declarado culpable de narcotráfico y delincuencia organizada en EE UU.” El País. February 21, 2023.

Peréz, David. “La condena a García Luna en Estados Unidos golpea de lleno a toda la política mexicana.” El País. February 22, 2023.

Rojas, Subizar. “García Luna, el zar antidroga de México, es declarado culpable de todos los cargos en su contra por narcotráfico en Nueva York.” Noticias Telemundo. February 21, 2023. 

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *