Mexican Attorney General arrested on drug charges


Heroin nabbed in Mombasa
Police guarding drugs netted in Mombasa. Photo/Courtesy

The attorney general of Mexico’s Pacific coast state of Nayarit, hard hit by drug cartel violence in recent years, has been arrested in San Diego on U.S. narcotics trafficking conspiracy charges, federal officials said on Wednesday (March 29).

Edgar Veytia, 45, who has served as the top law enforcement officer of Nayarit since 2013, was charged in a seven-page, three-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury on Monday (March 27) in the New York borough of Brooklyn and unsealed on Tuesday (March 28).

He was taken into custody on Monday in San Diego by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Drug Enforcement Administration and Homeland Security Investigations, acting on an arrest warrant, an FBI spokeswoman in San Diego said.

The arrest is another blow for Mexico President Enrique Pena Nieto’s Institutional Revolutionary Party, which governs Nayarit and is reeling from corruption scandals that have led a number of former governors to flee criminal charges.

Veytia was arraigned in U.S. District Court in San Diego on Tuesday, the FBI spokeswoman, Davene Butler, told Reuters. No further details of his arrest or court appearance were immediately released.

Veytia is accused of plotting with unnamed conspirators in the United States to manufacture, import and distribute unspecified quantities of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana between January 2013 and February 2017.

The governor of Nayarit, Roberto Sandoval, said the state government would cooperate with the investigation in Mexico and the United States and said he did not know details of the accusations against Veytia.

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