Thursday, July 7, 2011
A man who helped Tijuana's Arellano-Felix cartel bring in tons of cocaine into the U.S. has pleaded guilty to federal racketeering charges.
SAN DIEGO A man who helped the Tijuana-based Arellano-Felix drug cartel bring in tons of cocaine into the U.S. pleaded guilty Thursday to federal racketeering charges.
Rigoberto Yanez-Guerrero was extradited from Mexico to the U.S. last December, and faces up to 20 years in prison when he gets sentenced in October.
As a high-ranking member of the Arellano-Felix criminal organization, Yanez-Guerrero acted as a liaison between the cartel and Colombian cocaine traffickers who wanted to import and distribute cocaine throughout the U.S.
Speaking to a federal judge in San Diego, Yanez-Guerrero said he was personally responsible for shipping five to 10 tons of cocaine.
As far as his boss goes, Benjamin Arellano-Felix is facing federal charges in San Diego, including drug trafficking, money laundering and racketeering.
The Arellano-Felix gang was the top drug trafficking cartel for more than two decades in the Baja region. It was run by four brothers, Benjamin, Eduardo, Javier and Ramon.