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Border & Immigration

U.S. Citizen With Suspected Felix Cartel Ties Arrested in Mexico

A U.S. citizen suspected of being a high-ranking member of Tijuana's Arellano Felix drug cartel has been arrested in Mexico. The man is wanted on federal drug charges in the United States. KPBS reporter Amy Isackson has the story.

Mexican authorities say they've captured Gustavo Rivera Martinez in Baja California Sur.

They say they took him into custody along with three others.


Authorities say they'll send Rivera to the U.S. immediately.

Former federal prosecutor John Kirby says Rivera is a long time member of the Arellano Felix Cartel.

He was sort of one of the group of what they call the juniors, the well-to-do kids, essentially, who were attracted to Ramon Arellano in the day when Ramon almost had a rock star status in Tijuana.

Kirby says Rivera was part of Ramon Arellano's murder crew and then moved up the organizational ladder.

Mexico's Secretary of Public Safety says since 2006, Rivera has been the cartel's de facto leader.


Kirby says Rivera is a wealth of institutional information about the cartel.

Amy Isackson, KPBS News.