A Mexican national was extradited from Brazil to the United States on Wednesday to face international drug trafficking charges, federal officials announced Friday.

Jose Gonzalez-Valencia

Jose Gonzalez-Valencia, aka Jafett Arias-Becerra, aka La Chepa, aka Camaron, and aka Santy, 46, arrived in the U.S. on Wednesday and made his initial court appearance Thursday in federal court.

According to court documents, beginning in as early as 2006, Gonzalez-Valencia conspired with others to import more than five kilograms of cocaine into the United States from a foreign country.

According to court documents, Gonzalez-Valencia is alleged to be a high-ranking leader of the Los Cuinis drug-trafficking organization (DTO), which is based in Jalisco State in Mexico. Los Cuinis is closely aligned with the Cartel de Jalisco Nueva Generacion (CJNG).

Together, Los Cuinis and CJNG form one of the largest, most dangerous, and prolific drug cartels in Mexico.

They have been and continue to be responsible for trafficking tons of illegal drugs into the United States and employing extreme violence to further that objective.

The close alliance between Los Cuinis and CJNG is strengthened by familial ties between the criminal organizations: Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes, aka Mencho, the leader of CJNG, is married to Rosalinda Gonzalez-Valencia, who is the defendant’s sister. 

“Today’s extradition of Jose Gonzalez-Valencia showcases the commitment of Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) agents and prosecutors to bring alleged international drug traffickers to justice,” said DEA Administrator Anne Milgram. “Gonzalez-Valencia will face a jury in the United States after allegedly trafficking cocaine for more than a decade.”

A grand jury in the District of Columbia returned an indictment against Gonzalez-Valencia on Oct. 26, 2016.

In December 2017, Gonzalez-Valencia was arrested by Brazilian police in Fortaleza, Brazil, at the request of the United States, where he remained detained pending his extradition.

Gonzalez-Valencia is charged with conspiracy to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine, knowing and intending that it will be unlawfully imported to the United States.

If convicted, Gonzalez-Valencia is facing up to life in prison.

This case is part of “Operation Stir the Pot,” which was supported by the Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF). The DEA’s Los Angeles Field Division is investigating with the assistance of DEA Brasilia.        

By Raul

Raul Hernandez is a former journalist. He has worked as a newspaper reporter for more than 30 years at the El Paso Herald-Post, El Paso Times, Press Enterprise in Riverside, California and the Ventura County Star in California. He was a court reporter for more than 20 years.

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