The U.S. Justice Department is dropping a drug trafficking and money laundering case against former Mexican Secretary of National Defense Gen. Salvador Cienfuegos Zepeda, Attorney General William Barr said Tuesday.
The DOJ said Cienfuegos — who was initially charged in Brooklyn federal court — may now be probed by Mexican authorities.
“The U.S. Department of Justice … has provided Mexico evidence in this case and commits to continued cooperation, within that framework, to support the investigation by Mexican authorities,” Barr said in a joint statement with Mexican Attorney General Alejandro Gertz Manero.
Cienfuegos had been accused of using his influence to assist powerful Mexican drug cartels to conduct business with impunity and flood the US market with narcotics.
“As the decision today reflects, we are stronger when we work together and respect the sovereignty of our nations and their institutions,” the statement read.
The decision comes just weeks after Cienfuegos, 72, was arrested last month in Los Angeles for allegedly