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Press Release

Mexican national faces federal drug trafficking charges in New Mexico

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of New Mexico
Carlos Arturo Quintana was extradited to the United States to face 2015 indictment

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Alexander M.M. Uballez, United States Attorney for the District of New Mexico, announced today that Carlos Arturo “Ochenta” Quintana, 40, was arraigned on an indictment charging him with conspiracy to import a controlled substance into the United States.

A federal grand jury returned a superseding indictment charging Quintana, along with 10 other co-defendants, on July 23, 2015. According to the indictment and other court records, in February and March 2011, Quintana, Jesus Salas-Aguayo, Elmy Hermosillo, Raul Corella-Hernandez and Jorge Adrian Ortega-Gallegos allegedly distributed over 100 kilograms of marijuana to be imported into the United States for the Vicente Carrillo Fuentes Organization (VCFO).

The VCFO is a transnational criminal enterprise based in Chihuahua, Mexico, and is responsible for smuggling tons of narcotics into the United States. The VCFO is one of the oldest and most powerful criminal organizations in Mexico. Since its beginnings, the cartel has focused on drug trafficking, but has expanded into other criminal activities such as human trafficking, arms trafficking, kidnapping, extortion, and large-scale commercial gasoline theft from the Mexican government.

Quintana was extradited to the United States and taken into custody by the U.S. Marshals Service on Aug. 18. Quintana made an initial appearance in federal court on Aug. 19, and will remain in custody pending trial, which has not been scheduled.

An indictment is only an allegation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. If convicted, Quintana faces a minimum of five years and up to 40 years in prison.

The FBI Albuquerque Field Office investigated this case with assistance from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Las Cruces-Doña Ana County Metro Narcotics Agency. The Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs provided significant assistance in securing the arrest and extradition of Quintana from Mexico, and the Department thanks the Government of Mexico for the extradition.

U.S. Attorney Uballez and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Maria Y. Armijo and Randy Castellano are prosecuting the case.

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Updated August 23, 2022

Drug Trafficking
Press Release Number: 22-186