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No bond for Cali drug cartel defendant

March 15, 2005 at 11:41 AM   |   Comments

MIAMI, March 15 (UPI) -- A Miami federal magistrate has ordered one of the last Colombian cartel kingpins held without bond on charges he trafficked in drugs and laundered money.

Miguel Rodriguez Orejuela, 61, was flown to Miami Friday on a Drug Enforcement Administration plane. His brother, Gilberto, 66, was extradited in December.

The two are expected to enter innocent pleas before U.S. District Judge Federico Moreno later this month, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported Tuesday.

Gilberto is charged with continuing to run the Cali Cartel in the 1990s while he was in jail. Miguel is charged with running the cartel's daily affairs.

The U.S. government considers the extradition of the brothers the biggest success in the war against drugs since Colombian police killed Medellin cartel leader Pablo Escobar in 1993.

Before their arrests, the brothers built the Cali cartel into the world's biggest cocaine supplier, the DEA said. At one point, it made $7 billion a year, supplying 80 percent of the cocaine consumed in the United States.

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