(LibertySociety.com) – On January 24, US Attorney’s Office officials said authorities indicted six men for allegedly plotting to smuggle ammunition and assault weapons to a Mexican drug cartel. Police captured four of the men last week, including Californian and suspected ring leader Marco Antonio Santillan Valencia.
Authorities have the fifth member in custody in North Carolina, where he awaits trial on a separate charge, and officials believe the last perpetrator is in Mexico.
Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office Kristi Johnson stated the task force’s efforts in the charges and arrests “dealt a blow” to groups who traffick firearms.
Six indicted in scheme to provide high-powered guns & ammunition to Mexican drug cartel. Authorities seized military-style rifles, more than 350,000 rounds of ammo & $300,000 worth of gun parts & kits. Read more https://t.co/vV9leeo40Q
— ATF Los Angeles (@LosAngelesATF) January 25, 2022
The group allegedly used money from selling drugs to smuggle the weapons and buy ammunition in different states to create a cache for the Mexican gang named Cártel de Jalisco Nueva Generación, also known as CJNG.
The sting calls into question the security at the border and whether this is an isolated incident or something happening on a more regular basis. Given the overworked and overwhelmed personnel at the southern border in Texas trying to cover a tremendous amount of ground, the latter seems more likely.
If found guilty, the group of men faces a maximum of at least 30 years for their parts in the smuggling operations.
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