TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras, Dec. 21, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, the Honduran government announced that it has extradited Honduran national Roberto de Jesús Soto García to the United States. The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York charged Soto García with drug trafficking in June and identified him as a member of the Cartel of the Suns, a Venezuelan drug trafficking organization.
"Since I took office four years ago, cracking down on drug trafficking and transnational violent crime has been one of my administration's top priorities," Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernández said. "I am gratified that our efforts are showing results."
Honduran national police arrested Soto García on October 28, 2016, in Roatán, Honduras. Honduran authorities put him on a plane to New York yesterday.
According to his U.S. indictment, Soto García "agreed to participate in a cocaine transportation venture with Efraín Antonio Campo Flores, Francisco Flores de Freitas, and others."
Campo Flores and Flores de Freitas are Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro's nephews. Earlier this month, U.S. District Judge Paul Crotty sentenced them to 18 years in prison for drug trafficking.
Maduro has publicly supported Libre Alliance presidential candidate Salvador Nasralla. Minister Executive Secretary of the Cabinet of the Republic of Honduras Ebal Díaz has alleged that the Libre Alliance's support "may come from Venezuela and from organizations . . . that have expressed their support for these violent activities of disorder and anarchy."
Since taking office in 2014, the Hernández administration has extradited 18 drug lords to the United States, destroyed 150 airstrips used by drug traffickers, and removed one-third of the national police from their posts for various crimes.
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SOURCE Republic of Honduras