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Press Release

Leader of International Drug Trafficking Organization Pleads Guilty to Cocaine Trafficking Conspiracy

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

The leader of an international drug trafficking organization pleaded guilty yesterday to international cocaine trafficking conspiracy.

According to court documents, between 1998 and approximately 2012, Jaime Antonio Mandujano Eudave, 61, worked with the Sinaloa Cartel, to transport cocaine. Mandujano Eudave coordinated the transportation of cocaine by boat from Colombia to Culiacan, Los Cabos, and elsewhere in Mexico. He communicated GPS coordinates to the boat’s crew members to facilitate a meeting in the Pacific Ocean. There, the cocaine-laden boat from Colombia would meet another boat under the control of the Sinaloa Cartel and offload the cocaine. These boats transported multi-kilogram amounts of cocaine. Once the cocaine arrived in Mexico, other members of Sinaloa Cartel would transport the cocaine to the United States for sale. Mandujano Eudave knew that the cocaine subsequently would be transported into the United States for further distribution.   

In August 2014, Spanish authorities arrested Mandujano Eudave at the request of the United States. He was extradited from Spain to the United States in February 2015.

Mandujano Eudave pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine, knowing and intending that it would be imported into the United States. He is scheduled to be sentenced on June 15 and faces a maximum penalty of life in prison. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors. 

Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite, Jr. of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and Special Agent in Charge Ivan J. Arvelo of the Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) New York Field Office made the announcement.

The Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) supported this case. 

The HSI New York Field Office is investigating the case with assistance from the DEA Phoenix Field Division.

Trial Attorneys Kirk Handrich and Melanie Alsworth of the Criminal Division’s Narcotic and Dangerous Drug Section (NDDS) are prosecuting the case. The Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs also provided significant assistance.  

The NDDS thanks Spanish authorities for their assistance in securing the arrest and extradition of Mandujano Eudave.

Updated March 9, 2023

Topic
Drug Trafficking
Press Release Number: 23-264