All New Hampshire Cities

The Spanish Connection

There have been so many movies and television shows made with drug dealing as the main theme. It makes for a classic good-guy, bad-guy antithesis where there can be plenty of action and either the protagonist dies tragically or he wins out victorious and the audience can feel relieved that there is some justice in the world.

But would you ever have thought that our lovely New England state would have been a location for one of them? We’re not so naïve to think that there is no drug problem here – we unfortunately have our share as well. But a story from October 2012 was astounding in its connection with our state.

A massive drug pipeline was set up between Europe and New Hampshire, sponsored by one of Mexico’s most notorious drug cartels. The good news is that after a long and expertly executed investigation by a number of law enforcement parties working together, some of the key players have been arrested. While it is not the end of the problem, it was a significant injury to the business.

Manuel Jesus Guttierez Guzman and two others were arrested in Spain. Guzman is the cousin of the leader of the Sinaloa cartel’s alleged leader, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman-Loera. As such, he is the “prize” of the catch. The New Hampshire U.S. Attorney John P. Kacavas is working to extradite these three men so that they can stand trial here for their drug trafficking crimes. Undercover agents had met with the cartel members here, as well as in Florida and in the Virgin Islands, and received information regarding the plan to ship 1,000 to 3,000 kilograms of cocaine through this new chain.
The information was gathered as part of a three-year investigation by the Boston FBI office after 763 pounds of cocaine was seized.

Cheryl Fiandace referred to the sophisticated investigation, saying that, “The take-away is the incredible level of cooperation not only between local and federal law enforcement but among international police agencies as well.”

According to the Spanish authorities, the eventual plan was to send large shipments by sea in cargo containers.


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