Reportedly, drug traffickers in Central and South America have been able to operate with impunity due to alleged bribe payments to reportedly corrupt government officials in countries where most of the production and manufacture takes place. Federal officials in Texas seek to arrest these individuals on drug charges and extradite them to the United States for trial. A United States Attorney in Plano has sought to accomplish this by seeking and obtaining cooperation with law enforcement in other countries. 

The first such agreement of this nature was with Colombia and resulted in landmark convictions in 2012. The agreement with Colombia is still in force and resulted in 13 arrests on drug charges last May. The U.S. Attorney has since forged a similar agreement with the attorney general of Guatemala. The focus of this agreement will reportedly be to arrest and extradite corrupt Guatemalan officials who allegedly accept bribe money and allow the cartels to operate with impunity. 

American and Guatemalan law enforcement officials met last Tuesday in Plano to lay the groundwork for planned future operations. They also held a joint press conference to announce the cooperation of law enforcement between the two countries, as well as the arrest and extradition of the mayor of a Guatemalan town on the Mexican border. The U.S. Attorney asserted that, thanks to the new agreement, Texans can expect to see more such arrests and prosecutions in the near future. 

The Guatemalan mayor was a priority target for the United States. The Guatemalan attorney general’s office reportedly had to exert some “political willpower” to secure his extradition due to the position that he held. His indictment on money-laundering and drug charges took place in 2018. Individuals facing similar charges in Texas may wish to hire an attorney.