Sergio Neftali Mejia-Duarte was nothing if not a hard working narco-trafficker. Over 10 years prosecutors say he used "go-fast boats, helicopters and airplanes" to transport something like 22 tons of cocaine -- a conservative estimate -- through Central America as it made its way from producers in Colombia to cartel customers in Mexico.
“Until his arrest, Sergio Neftali Mejia-Duarte was a violent and prolific drug trafficker whose criminal organization supplied cocaine to the Sinaloa Cartel [in Mexico], knowing full well that the poison would make its way to our streets,” Acting Assistant Attorney General Cronan said in a U.S. Department of Justice press release today that announced a life sentence for Mejia-Duarte.
Mejia-Duarte was convicted in January on a single drug running charge, but was accused of no small amount of violent acts and general mayhem, including multiple instances of attempted witness intimidation and having allegedly employed an assassin (named Kevin, of all things) from Colombia in a dispute with a rival.
"Kevin used to work for the paramilitary groups in Colombia," Warner Lopez, a witness and convicted drug trafficker, said during the trial. "Neftali needed an individual who had no scruples whatsoever. Kevin was from the city of Medellin. I had the opportunity of sending him off individually from Panama, and Mr. Jose Perez [an alleged Colombian drug figure] had asked me to take care of him quite well."
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