Jan. 7, 2019– Mary Greeley News – The former attorney of the Mexican state of Nayarit, Edgar Veytia, has pleaded guilty to drug charges he faced in a New York court.
During the trial, Veytia admitted receiving money from the drug cartels in order to help them enter the United States with drugs such as cocaine, heroin and methamphetamines.
His collaboration with the cartels, which he did not identify, occurred between 2013 and 2017 when he was arrested in San Diego, California.
The Prosecutor for the Eastern District of New York told the court that Veytia made arrangements to avoid the arrest of the drug traffickers.
Veytia himself was arrested in March of 2017 while crossing the border from Tijuana to San Diego on charges brought by a federal grand jury in Brooklyn. Veytia, who is 48, could be sentenced to more than 10 years in prison.
He was a prosecutor for the state of Nayarit, appointed by former governor Roberto Sandoval (2011-2017).
He sought to cut an image as a fearless anti-crime crusader in his home state of Nayarit, in western Mexico.
Edgar Veytia — the state’s attorney general, a lawyer and a survivor of a 2011 assassination attempt linked to traffickers — once declared: “Nayarit is not fertile ground for law-breaking. Here, there is no room for organized crime.”
His purported crime-fighting acumen even led to a corrido, or popular ballad, championing Veytia as the “terror” of criminals and the “lawyer with a pistol on his belt.”
But media reports had hinted of a darker side, linking Veytia to the powerful Jalisco New Generation Cartel, a bitter rival of the Sinaloa Cartel of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman. Relatives of “disappeared” victims of the cartel wars complained publicly that the attorney general’s office in Nayarit did little to find their missing loved ones.
Now U.S. authorities say that Veytia’s law-and-order image was a public relations façade concealing his involvement in the nation’s massive illegal drug trade — an allegation that amplified the common belief in Mexico that being a politician is a license to amass clandestine riches.
Veytia, 46, was arrested at the U.S.-Mexico border March 2017 in San Diego on a federal indictment from New York alleging that he has conspired to smuggle heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine to the United States since 2013 — the year he became the top law enforcement official in Nayarit state.
Nayarit, Edgar Veytia
Authorities issued an arrest warrant on corruption charges for Cesar Duarte, the ex-governor of the border state of Chihuahua, a major drug-trafficking corridor to the United States. Calling him a fugitive, the current governor said that Duarte had likely fled across the border to El Paso, Texas.
In December 2018, a Mexico federal court has ruled that a so-called “Impunity Expo” in Mexico City showcasing evidence of corruption allegedly committed by a former Chihuahua governor must be shut down because it compromises his right to the presumption of innocence.
United States Ambassador Earl Anthony Wayne and Governor César Duarte Jáquez of Chihuahua (right) at the U.S. Embassy in Mexico City.
The Mexico City-based administrative court granted a provisional suspension order to ex-governor César Duarte, who ruled the northern border state between 2010 and 2016 before fleeing Mexico early last year to avoid possible criminal charges.
The court said that photographs, video and other evidence on display at the Chihuahua government’s offices in Mexico City could discredit Duarte’s personal and professional reputation.
Current Chihuahua Governor Javier Corral, who has made bringing Duarte to justice a central aim of his administration, inaugurated the exhibition officially called “Impunity Expo: the plundering of César Duarte, protected by the regime,” on November 22.