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A former Mexican prosecutor testifies in the trial against García Luna that Felipe Calderón asked to protect 'El Chapo'

2023-02-07T23:20:07.582Z


The testimony of Édgar 'El Diablo' Veytia, one of the most anticipated in the trial in New York, is the first to link the former Mexican president to the drug trafficking plot for which the former Secretary of Security of Mexico is being tried. But Felipe Calderón denied any relationship with organized crime: "It's an absolute lie."


For the first time since the drug trafficking trial against former Mexican Security Secretary Genaro García Luna began in the United States, one of the witnesses called by the Prosecutor's Office links former President Felipe Calderón (2006-2012) with organized crime in Mexico.

Édgar

El Diablo

Veytia, former prosecutor of the state of Nayarit, said Tuesday in federal court in New York that

Calderón and García Luna had ordered to protect Joaquín

El Chapo

Guzmán and his Sinaloa Cartel

, and that this alleged sponsorship gave the criminal group an advantage. in front of the Beltrán Leyva family, with which

El Chapo

was disputing control of drug trafficking to the United States.

[The DEA knew about García Luna's alleged ties to drug trafficking for more than 10 years, says a federal agent in court]

In an explosive testimony, one of the most anticipated of the trial,

El Diablo

said that in 2009 the then governor of Nayarit, Ney González, summoned him inside a vehicle and told him that he had just had an important meeting with Calderón and García Luna, both on duty.

"The line was (to protect) El Chapo,"

El Diablo

said of the former president's alleged order.

"We had to privilege the

Chapos

and not the Beltrán, as we had been doing."

Veytia also said when answering questions from the Prosecutor's Office that he was very surprised after hearing the words of the then governor.

El Diablo

did not elaborate on the circumstances of the alleged meeting.

Felipe Calderon was president of Mexico between 2006 and 2012. Richard Drew / AP

When the Prosecutor's Office asked Veytia this Tuesday for more information about his alleged meeting with the former governor of Nayarit, he limited himself to answering:

"The governor is not asked for explanations

," adding that he withdrew from the site after listening to the orders. 

Former President Felipe Calderón, who until now had not ruled on the trial against García Luna — his own appointed drug czar — responded to the allegations almost immediately.

“I have reserved my opinion on the trial of Eng.

García Luna until it is concluded," Calderón said in a post on Twitter.

“For now I categorically deny the absurd statements reported by the press made today by the witness Veytia.

What you say about me is an absolute lie.

I never negotiated or agreed with criminals

, ”he pointed out. 

Édgar

El Diablo

Veytia was sentenced in the United States in 2019 to 20 years in prison for collaborating with drug trafficking and receiving bribes from the H2 cartel, from Juan Francisco Partón Sánchez, former leader of the Beltrán Leyva.

Veytia was arrested in March 2017 at the border bridge that connects the cities of Tijuana, Baja California and San Diego, while trying to cross into the United States, and later accused of drug trafficking. 

After his arrest, the Mexican press published multiple stories about irregularities when he held public positions such as the Transit Directorate, the Secretary of Public Security and the Nayarit Deputy Attorney General's Office.

A report published in the magazine Proceso in August 2019 indicates that, in the period 2011-2017, hooded police officers

led by Veytia extorted hundreds of people to strip them of their homes, ranches, businesses, warehouses, land, and money.

Veytia is the most recent in a series of witnesses from the Prosecutor's Office who have assured that the narco leaders collected cash to pay García Luna for protection, confidential information and facilitation of the operations of the Sinaloa Cartel.

In previous days, other former drug lords who have also been convicted have assured that they had personal meetings with García Luna or his right-hand man, Luis Cárdenas Palomino, to deliver black suitcases full of cash in exchange for being able to move the drug without controls through the Mexico City airport. .

A second drug trafficker assures that he paid millionaire bribes to Genaro García Luna

Jan 31, 202301:40

Sergio Villarreal Barragán alias

El Grande

testified that García Luna was "the best investment of the Sinaloa Cartel" and affirmed that García Luna was once kidnapped by Arturo Beltrán to put pressure on him.

García Luna's lawyer has defended that the Prosecutor's witnesses are former criminals who were apprehended thanks to the work of the former Secretary of Security in his fight against drug trafficking.

"What better revenge than burying the man who led the war against the cartels," he said.

The defense has also maintained that there is no concrete evidence (such as recordings or photographs) that demonstrates García Luna's ties to drug trafficking. 

["Black suitcases full of money" belonging to the drug trafficker arrived at García Luna when he was secretary, a witness from the Prosecutor's Office assures]

El Diablo

said this Tuesday that together with Roberto Sandoval Castañeda, former mayor of Tepic and former governor of Nayarit, he received bribes from the Beltrán Leyva brothers' clan in exchange for not investigating them, protecting them and not interfering in their business. 

He recounted that at the end of October 2008 he met with the then head of security in the city of Tepic, whom he identified as Commander Violante, and that he told him that during a national security convention he had received "instructions from Genaro García Luna." of "taking the side of

Chapo

", something that, he said, he did not do.

Shortly after, Violante would resign his position and Veytia would become Tepic's Traffic Director and in charge of Public Security for the city, which he described as "the second most violent city in Mexico" at that time.

Édgar Veytia, former prosecutor of the Mexican state of Nayarit convicted of drug trafficking, gives his testimony in the trial in New York against Genaro García Luna.Jane Rosenberg

The Prosecutor's Office accuses Genaro García Luna of having ties to the Sinaloa Cartel when he directed the Federal Investigation Agency of Mexico (created in 2001) and of continuing this relationship during his tenure as Secretary of Public Security (until 2012), which he controls. Federal Police.

"Doing crimes was easy for him: he thought he was above the law," said prosecutor Philip Nathan Pilmar.

The judge in the case, Brian Cogan, is the same one who in 2019 tried

El Chapo

Guzmán for drug trafficking, in the same New York court.

It was precisely during that trial that the first accusations against García Luna arose.

It was Jesús

El

Rey

Zambada, co-founder of the Sinaloa Cartel along with Guzmán, who assured as a witness for the Prosecutor's Office that he had delivered two separate packages to García Luna in 2005 and 2007 with 3 million dollars each, in exchange for protection for the activities of the criminal group.

García Luna, the highest-ranking former official to be tried in the US, faces three charges for cocaine trafficking, one for organized crime and another for false statements.

If found guilty, he faces a maximum sentence of life in prison. 

With information from EFE Agency.

Source: telemundo

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