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Press Release

Leader Of International Drug Network Extradited From Costa Rica Sentenced To More Than 17 Years In Federal Prison

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Florida

Tampa, Florida – U.S. District Judge William Jung has sentenced Piero Antonio Lubo-Barros (52, Colombia), a/k/a “Nostradamus,” to 17 years and 6 months in federal prison for conspiracy to distribute cocaine knowing and intending it to be imported into the United States. The indictment against Lubo-Barros was returned in the Middle District of Florida in April 2019. He was arrested in January 2021 while living under an assumed identity in Costa Rica and then extradited to the United States in November 2021. Lubo-Barros pleaded guilty on August 10, 2022.

According to testimony presented at sentencing, beginning in approximately September 2017 and continuing through 2019, Lubo-Barros oversaw a transnational criminal conspiracy that transported cocaine throughout Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, and directly to the United States, including parts of Texas, California, Fort Lauderdale and Miami, Florida. During the investigation, Lubo-Barros discussed the shipment of cocaine through land and sea, including negotiating drug shipments, establishing new drug trafficking routes, paying his co-conspirators, discussing currency transfers, drug debts and methods used to avoid apprehension and detection by law enforcement. One such distribution was attempted by Lubo Barros in 2018 on board the cruise vessel the Island Princess as it docked in Fort Lauderdale. The cocaine distributed by Lubo-Barros and others displayed identifying symbols and marks. Those marks were found in kilograms of cocaine recovered by law enforcement in New York, Pennsylvania, and Florida.

Lubo-Barros’s co co-conspirator, Gerardo Gomez-Lubo, was also indicted in April 2019. He was later extradited from Panama to the United States. On June 24, 2022, Gomez Lubo was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison.

“This case should serve as a reminder to those who seek to poison American communities with illicit drugs; the Drug Enforcement Administration is relentless in our pursuit of bad actors,” said Special Agent in Charge J. Todd Scott, head of DEA’s Louisville Division. “Wherever you are in the world, the dedicated men and women of the DEA will find you and bring you to justice.”

This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration with assistance from U.S. Customs and Border Protection. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Diego F. Novaes.

The Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs provided significant support with the defendant’s extradition. This case was part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at

Updated January 31, 2023

Drug Trafficking