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La Familia Michoacana cartel member 'La Minsa' extradited to U.S.

By Andrew V. Pestano
La Familia Michoacana cartel member 'La Minsa' extradited to U.S.
Arnoldo "La Minsa" Rueda-Medina, 47, was extradited from Mexico to the United States, where he faces drug-trafficking charges in Texas. He is an accused member of the Sinaloa Cartel-allied La Familia Michoacana cartel. Photo courtesy of Mexico Attorney General's Office

Jan. 30 (UPI) -- Arnoldo "La Minsa" Rueda-Medina, an accused member of the Sinaloa Cartel-allied La Familia Michoacana cartel, was extradited from Mexico to the United States.

Rueda-Medina, 47, is charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, distribution of methamphetamine and cocaine and conspiracy to launder monetary instruments, the Justice Department's U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Texas said in a statement.

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"The indictment alleges that from approximately September 2008 to October 21, 2009 ... Rueda-Medina and 13 co-conspirators arranged for the acquisition of cocaine and methamphetamine from supply sources affiliated with the 'La Familia Michoacan' Mexican drug cartel, arranged to transport these multi-kilogram quantities of cocaine and methamphetamine from Michoacan, Mexico, and other locations to north Texas and elsewhere, and transported U.S. currency representing drug proceeds to Michoacan ... to pay for these cocaine and methamphetamine shipments," the Justice Department agency wrote.

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Rueda-Medina, who was extradited on Friday and later made his first court appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge David L. Horan, is also accused, along with his co-conspirators, of using drug funds to rent homes in north Texas used to store drugs and drug funds used to expand their illicit business.

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Rueda-Medina, who was arrested in 2009, faces a minimum 10-year sentence and a $4 million fine if convicted of drug conspiracy. If convicted of money laundering conspiracy, Rueda-Medina faces up to 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of $500,000.

"This case and others like it around the country demonstrate that, when we work together with our law enforcement partners both here and in Mexico, we can bring cartel leadership to justice," said U.S. Attorney John Parker in the statement.

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