Global RiskNews Briefs

Former Mexican Defense Minister Arrested in U.S. at DEA Request

Yesterday Mexico’s former defense minister was reportedly detained and arrested by US authorities. The incident occurred upon the request of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) due to an investigation into high-ranking Mexican officials with alleged ties to drug corruption and trade. The former minister, General Salvador Cienfuegos, served from 2012 to 2018 under President Enrique Peña Nieto.

General Cienfuegos was reportedly traveling with his family upon his arrest, according to US government officials. Cienfuegos is the current highest-ranking official to be arrested in connection to the investigation into drug-related corruption, following several other Mexican figures including General Jesús Gutiérrez Rebollo, who was arrested in the late 1990s. Rebollo was sentenced o 40 years in prison as a result of accepting bribes from drug cartels, eventually dying in prison in 2013. Current Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador will likely be emboldened by the arrest, as he has based his political career on combatting drug corruption within the Mexican political sector following the downfall of his successors due to suspicions of extreme corruption.

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