International Narcotics Trafficker Extradited from Honduras to United States Sentenced
The first Honduran national extradited to the United States for drug trafficking was sentenced today to serve 20 years in prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release, for his involvement in a conspiracy to distribute cocaine in the United States.
Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Alysa D. Erichs, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (ICE-HSI), Miami Field Office, and A.D. Wright, Acting Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Miami Field Division, made the announcement.
U.S. District Court Judge Darrin P. Gayles’ sentencing of Carlos Arnoldo Lobo, a/k/a “Negro,” 39, of, San Pedro Sula, Honduras, was the culmination of a five-year multi-agency investigation into the drug smuggling activities operating near La Ceiba, Honduras. To date, the investigation has resulted in the indictment and conviction of 18 drug traffickers who worked for Lobo. Lobo’s network coordinated the smuggling of cocaine by vessels from Colombia and Ecuador, to Panama and Honduras, then into Guatemala and other countries, including Mexico and the United States. As the owner and operator of several dozen vessels, he controlled drug shipments into and out of the eastern coast of Honduras.
Lobo pled guilty on September 5, 2014, to conspiring to distribute cocaine knowing that the cocaine would be imported into the United States. The conspiracy involved more than 450 kilograms of cocaine during the three years charged in the indictment.
“U.S. Attorney Ferrer stated, “As a result of the extraordinary efforts of U.S. law enforcement working together with our Honduran law enforcement partners, one of the most significant drug traffickers in Central America has been brought to justice. This case serves as an example that there are no borders when it comes to prosecuting international narcotrafficking; we will continue to work with our international law enforcement partners to bring drug traffickers who distribute illegal substances in the United States to justice.”
“Lobo’s arrest and sentence has led to the dismantling of a large scale drug trafficking organization responsible for smuggling hundreds tons of cocaine into our country”, said HIS Special Agent in Charge Erichs. “The arrest and sentence should send a strong message to those responsible for the importation of illegal drugs into the United States that we will not rest until they are brought to justice.”
DEA Acting Special Agent in Charge Wright stated, “The sentencing of Carlos Lobo, one of the biggest cocaine transporters in the international drug trade, is a reminder that justice will be served. The DEA will continue to pursue the highest level of drug traffickers and work with our international and domestic partners to dismantle these criminal enterprises that threaten to bring these dangerous drugs into our borders.”
Carlos Arnoldo Lobo’s sentence is the result of an ongoing Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation led by HSI in conjunction with the DEA Miami Field Division. The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking, weapons trafficking and money laundering organizations, and those primarily responsible for the nation’s illegal drug supply.
Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of ICE-HSI and DEA; and thanked the Office of International Affairs of the Department of Justice, ICE-HSI Attaché’s Office in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, and the DEA Attaché’s Office in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, for their significant assistance and support during the arrest and extradition of the defendant.
Mr. Ferrer also commended the efforts of President of the Honduran Republic Juan Orlando Hernàndez Alvarado and other Honduran officials for their cooperation and support during the extradition and prosecution of Carlos Arnoldo Lobo. This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kurt K. Lunkenheimer.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.