News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 27, 2008
Contact: Garrison Courtney
DEA Public Affairs
Number: 202-307-7977

Gun Battle Ends With Arrest Of Eduardo Arellano-Felix
DEA Intelligence leads Mexican Authorities to kingpin whose capture commanded $5 million reward

Eduardo Arellano-Felix after he was taken into custody.
Eduardo Arellano-Felix after he was taken into custody.

OCT 27 -- (Washington, D.C.) – Drug Enforcement Administration Acting Administrator Michele M. Leonhart and Facundo Rosas, Under Secretary for Intelligence and Strategy, Mexican Federal Police, announced today one of the most significant arrests ever in the ongoing battle against global drug trafficking. On Saturday, Oct. 25, Eduardo Arellano-Felix, a Consolidated Priority Organization Target or CPOT, was apprehended after a drawn out gun battle with a Mexican Special Tactical Team in Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico.

Intelligence gathered by DEA and San Diego Field Division identified Arellano-Felix’s hideout in the Otay Mesa area of Tijuana; and once Mexican authorities announced their presence at the location later in the day, one of the most sought after drug traffickers in the world started shooting.

After several shots were fired, Mexican authorities were able to gain access to the residence and Arellano-Felix was apprehended without further incident. No one was injured in the gun battle, and a 12-year-old female, who has been identified as the fugitive’s daughter, was safely evacuated from the scene.

After his brother Francisco Javier’s arrest in August, 2006, Eduardo took over the day-to-day control of the drug cartel which has been responsible for smuggling several tons of marijuana and cocaine into the United States each year. Eduardo Arellano-Felix was the last original member of the organization who was not in custody or deceased.

“The arrest of Eduardo Arellano-Felix closes the book on this once powerful and brutally violent criminal band of brothers,” said DEA Acting Administrator Michele M. Leonhart. “DEA and our courageous partners in Mexico relentlessly pursued the kingpins of this cartel, and Eduardo is the last of five to be captured. He will now face justice for the misery and destruction he caused in both the United States and Mexico.”

"The arrest of Eduardo Arellano-Felix was a result of the outstanding collaboration between the U.S. Marshals, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the government of Mexico,” said Deputy Director Brian Beckwith of the U.S. Marshals Service. “The Marshals Service has participated in this joint investigative effort since it’s inception a decade ago, and during that time the full range of this agency's investigative resources have been employed with the goal of bringing this fugitive to justice."

The U.S. State Department had been offering a $5 million reward for information leading to the arrest of Arellano-Felix.