Mexican Cartel Leaders Edgar Valdez-Villarreal, a.k.a. “La Barbie,” and Carlos Montemayor Gonzalez, Extradited to the United States to Face Charges in Atlanta
ATLANTA – Edgar Valdez-Villarreal, a.k.a. “La Barbie,” and Carlos Montemayor Gonzalez, who are charged in the Northern District of Georgia with importing drugs and money laundering, are among 13 defendants extradited from Mexico this afternoon to face pending charges in the United States. Valdez and Montemayor are alleged to be high-level members of Mexico’s Beltran-Leyva Cartel and were arrested in Mexico on the Atlanta, Georgia, charges in 2010.
“Valdez and Montemayor are charged with leading the efforts for a top Mexican cocaine cartel with sending drugs into the United States while funneling millions of dollars in cash back into Mexico,” said U.S. Attorney John Horn. “Given Atlanta’s status as a distribution hub for the Mexican cartels, this case demonstrates our commitment to work internationally and include the cartels’ leadership in our cases.”
Daniel R. Salter, the Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration in Atlanta commented, “Today’s extraditions are a great outcome for cooperative law enforcement. DEA, the United States Attorney’s Office (Northern District of Georgia) and our federal, state, local, and foreign partners remain committed to ensuring the safety and security of the United States. Citizens can rest assured that DEA will continue to target these drug trafficking organization’s intent of making a living on the backs of addiction.”
Attorney General Loretta Lynch, Assistant Attorney General Leslie Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, Administrator Chuck Rosenberg of the Drug Enforcement Administration, FBI Director James Comey and Acting Director David Harlow of the U.S. Marshals Service announced the extraditions today in Washington.
The extraditions are a result of ongoing, high-level discussions among law enforcement officials from the start of the tenures of Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch of the United States and Attorney General Arely Gómez González of Mexico. In their first meeting on June 16, 2015, the attorneys general agreed to begin a new push for collaboration between the two nations and committed to working closely to fight international organized crime.
“Today’s extraditions would not have been possible without the close collaboration and productive relationship the Department of Justice enjoys with officials at the highest levels of law enforcement in Mexico,” said Attorney General Lynch. “I am grateful to our Mexican counterparts not only for their assistance with this important matter, but also for their extraordinary efforts and unwavering partnership in our ongoing fight against international organized crime. I look forward to all that we will continue to accomplish in the service of that mission as we build on these achievements together in the days and months ahead.”
Valdez and Montemayor are accused of supplying tractor trailer trucks full of cocaine from Mexico to the Eastern United States on behalf of the Sinaloa and Beltran-Leyva cartels. They were indicted in the Northern District of Georgia on June 11, 2010, with conspiring to import and distribute cocaine, as well as conspiring to launder money by transporting drug money from the United States into Mexico. Valdez Villarreal is also indicted in the Eastern District of Louisiana on narcotics-related charges.
Valdez, Montemayor, and the other 11 defendants were extradited from Mexico this afternoon and were placed in the custody of U.S. Marshals. They will proceed to make initial appearances in federal district court in the coming days.
The remaining 11 defendants include:
• Luis Umberto Hernandez Celis, aka Pack; Alberto Nunez-Payan, aka Fresa, Fresco and 97, and Ricardo Valles de la Rosa, aka Chino, are alleged members of the Barrio Azteca gang and were charged on March 9, 2011, in Western District of Texas with participating in the March 13, 2010, murders in Juarez, Mexico, of U.S. Consulate employee Leslie Ann Enriquez Catton, her husband Arthur Redelfs and Jorge Alberto Salcido Ceniceros, the husband of a U.S. Consulate employee.
• Jorge Costilla-Sanchez, aka El Cos, is an alleged former leader of the Gulf Cartel and Los Zetas, and was charged on April 10, 2002, in the Southern District of Texas with cocaine and marijuana importation and distribution, money laundering, and threatening federal law enforcement officers with assault, kidnapping or murder. Costilla-Sanchez was among the FBI’s most wanted until his arrest by Mexican authorities on Sept. 12, 2012.
• Jean Baptiste Kingery was charged on Nov. 20, 2013, in the Central District of California with arms trafficking related to the illegal exportation of defense article and munitions from the United States to Mexico. Kingery is expected to make his initial appearance in the District of Arizona on Oct. 1, 2015.
• Aureliano Montoya-Pena, aka La Changa, was among 20 defendants charged on Nov. 2, 2011, in the Northern District of Illinois with conspiracy to possess and distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine and various other offenses related to transporting millions of dollars in drug proceeds between Chicago and Mexico.
• Julio Cesar Valenzuela-Elizalde, aka The Pilot, was among eight defendants charged on Dec. 19, 2002, in the District of Arizona with an international methamphetamine distribution conspiracy, conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine and conspiracy to import a controlled substance.
• Martin Daniel Castillo-Rascon was charged on June 12, 2013, in the Western District of Texas with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance, conspiracy to import a controlled substance, possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance, importation of a controlled substance and aiding and abetting.
• Antonio Reynoso-Gonzalez was charged in 1995 in the Southern District of California along with Joaquin Guzman-Loera, aka El Chapo, and 22 others with conspiracy to import and to possess cocaine with intent to distribute.
• Antonio Gonzalez Platas was charged in the state of Arkansas with rape.
The charges and allegations in an indictment are merely accusations. The defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.
Today’s extraditions were coordinated by the Criminal Division’s Office of International Affairs, the FBI, the DEA and the U.S. Marshals Service. The federal cases are being handled by prosecutors in the Criminal Division’s Narcotic and Dangerous Drug Section and Organized Crime and Gang Section and in the U.S. Attorney’s Offices in the District of Columbia, Central District of California, Northern District of Georgia, Northern District of Illinois, Eastern District of Louisiana, Southern District of Texas and the Western District of Texas. The state case is being handled by the Office of the Prosecuting Attorney for Arkansas.
For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016. The Internet address for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia is http://www.justice.gov/usao-ndga.