Sinaloa Cartel Drug-Trafficker and Drug-Proceeds Money-LaundererSinaloa Cartel Drug-Trafficker and Drug-Proceeds Money-Launderer Extradited from Italy
SAN DIEGO – The United States Department of Justice, Office of the United States Attorneys has announced an important milestone in a long-running active investigation into a worldwide drug-trafficking conspiracy along with millions of dollars in drug-proceeds money laundering.
Ramon Santoyo-Cristobal (44), (from Mexico City, Mexico,) aka Dr. Wagner, a former Mexican Federal Police officer and alleged Sinaloa Cartel drug trafficker, was extradited to the United States from Italy on 11/18/2020.
This criminal case No: 16-cr-1896-DMS marks the most recent successful extradition of a cartel member in a years-long investigation.
Originally, a federal grand jury sitting in the Southern District of California returned an indictment on 08/19/2016, charging Santoyo-Cristobal with participating in a long-running, world-wide conspiracy to traffic substantial quantities of methamphetamine, cocaine, and heroin from Mexico into the United States, as well as laundering millions of dollars in drug proceeds.
A fugitive on the run for almost three years, Santoyo-Cristobal was apprehended by Italian authorities in August 2019 during a visit to Rome. While in the Italian courts, he contested his extradition, but his arguments were rejected in 07/2020 by the Supreme Court of Cassation.
Upon arrival in San Diego, the Sinaloa Cartel drug-trafficker made an initial appearance in front of Judge Andrew Schopler, and to where he will appear next at a detention hearing this week.
“This extradition ruling by the Italian courts demonstrates that those who violate U.S. laws and seek to evade justice will find no place to hide,” said U.S. Attorney Robert Brewer. “The Department of Justice appreciates the cooperation of the Italian authorities in this matter. With the assistance of our law enforcement colleagues at home and around the world, we will aggressively pursue every avenue available in bringing drug traffickers to justice.” Brewer praised prosecutor Matthew J. Sutton and DEA agents for their excellent work on this case.
“DEA and our law enforcement partners will continue to use all available resources to bring drug traffickers to justice,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge John W. Callery. “This extradition should serve as a warning to other members of the Sinaloa Cartel: we will find you no matter where in the world you try to hide and we will bring you back to the United States for prosecution.”
As part of a five-year investigation led by the Southern District of California – this case has resulted in charges against over 125 people and has had a significant impact on the worldwide operations of the Sinaloa Cartel. “This investigation has also offered one of the most comprehensive views to date of the inner workings of one of the world’s most prolific, violent and powerful drug cartels,” said The United States Department of Justice, Office of the United States Attorneys. “Cartel members and associates were targeted in this massive investigation involving multiple countries, numerous law enforcement agencies around the United States, a number of federal districts and over 250 court-authorized wiretaps in this district alone.”
Ramon Santoyo-Cristobal has been charged with: Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances for Purpose of Unlawful Importation, in violation of Title 21 U.S.C. §§ 959, 960 and 963. Term of custody including a mandatory minimum 10 years and up to life imprisonment, $10 million fine.
Conspiracy to Import Controlled Substances, in violation of Title 21 U.S.C. §§ 952, 960 and 963. Term of custody including a mandatory minimum 10 years and up to life imprisonment, $10 million fine.
Conspiracy to Launder Monetary Instruments, in violation of Title 18 U.S.C. 1956(h). Term of custody up to 20 years in prison, a fine of $500,000 or twice the value of the monetary instrument or funds involved.