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DEA Background Information (2/97)

Miguel Caro-Quintero's organization is based in Sonora, Mexico and focuses its attention on trafficking cocaine and marijuana. His brother, Rafael, is in prison in Mexico for his role in killing DEA Special Agent Kiki Camarena in 1985.

Miguel, along with two of his other brothers--Jorge and Genaro--run the organization. Miguel himself was arrested in 1992, and the USG and GOM cooperated in a bilateral prosecution. Unfortunately, that effort was thwarted when Miguel was able to use a combination of threats and bribes to have his charges dismissed by a federal judge in Hermosillo. He has operated freely since that time.

The Caro-Quintero organization specializes primarily in the cultivation, production and distribution of marijuana, a major cash-crop for drug groups from Mexico. The organization is believed to own many ranches in the northern border state of Sonora, where drugs are stored, and from which drug operations into the United States are staged. Despite its specialization in marijuana cultivation and distribution , like the other major drug organizations in Mexico, this group is polydrug in nature, also transporting and distributing cocaine and methamphetamine.

Miguel Caro-Quintero is the subject of several indictments in the United States and is currently the subject of provisional arrest warrants issued by the United States government, yet in an act of astonishing arrogance he called a radio station in Hermosillo, Mexico last May indicating that he was bothered by statements I had made that he was an innocent rancher and charges made against him by DEA were untrue. He then had the audacity to give his address and invite law enforcement officials from Mexico and the United States to visit him--yet he remains at large.

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