A convicted drug trafficker and former cartel leader has testified in a New York court that he bribed the Honduran president, Juan Orlando Hernández, 와 $250,000 in exchange for government contracts as well as protection from capture and extradition to the United States.
“It was for protection so neither the military nor preventative police would arrest me or my brother in Honduras and so we would not be extradited to the United States,” Devis Leonel Rivera Maradiaga, a leader of the Honduran drug clan Los Cachiros, testified in the trial of alleged drug trafficker Geovanny Fuentes Ramírez.
Rivera said the money, which was paid in 2012 when Hernandez was head of Honduras’ congress, was delivered in cash to the president’s now deceased sister, Hilda.
Hernández, who is listed as a co-conspirator in the indictment of Fuentes Ramirez, has repeatedly denied any involvement in drug trafficking. One of his brothers, Juan Antonio Hernández, was convicted of drug trafficking in the same court in 2019.
Fuentes Ramírez pleaded not guilty on Monday.
Rivera made a deal with the Drug Enforcement Administration in 2013 and turned himself in around two years later after the United States sanctioned shell companies Rivera said he owned.
During that trial, the president was accused of accepting more than $1 million from Mexican drug trafficker Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán.
U.S. prosecutors have alleged that much of Hernández’s political rise was funded by drug traffickers who paid to be allowed to move drugs through Honduras without interference.
Hernández’s government is expected to receive more cautious treatment from the administration of President Joe Biden than it did from former President Donald Trump.
수요일에, Roberta Jacobson, the former U.S. ambassador to Mexico, who is now the White House coordinator for the southern border, said that none of the $4 billion Biden wants to send for development aid in the Northern Triangle nations of Central America would go to the presidents of those three countries.
Last month, Democratic senators filed a bill calling on Biden to impose sanctions on Hernández and “determine whether he is a specially designated narcotics trafficker.”