Former Mexican defense minister Gen. Salvador Cienfuegos was busted at Los Angeles International Airport on drug trafficking and money laundering charges, according to US and Mexican sources.
Cienfuegos was taken into custody on a US Drug Enforcement Administration warrant Thursday, two people with knowledge of the arrest told the Associated Press.
Both were not authorized to publicly discuss the case and spoke on the condition of anonymity.
A senior Mexican official, who also wished to remain anonymous, said Cienfuegos was arrested when he arrived at the airport with his family.
While Cienfuegos’ family members were released, he was taken to the Metropolitan Detention Center, according to the official.
Mexico’s foreign minister, Marcelo Ebrard, tweeted Thursday night that US Ambassador Christopher Landau has informed him of Cienfuegos’ arrest, and that the retired general has the right to receive consular assistance.
He then tweeted early Friday that Cienfuegos will be transferred to New York, and his lawyer will arrive in a