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Narcotics Rewards Program: Edgar Valdez-Villarreal

Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs


Edgar Valdez-Villarreal

ALIASES: "La Barbie," "El Güero," "El Comandante"
DOB: August 11, 1973
POB: Laredo, Texas
CITIZENSHIP: United States of America
HEIGHT: 5 feet 9 inches
WEIGHT: 190 pounds

The Sinaloa drug trafficking organization is considered one of the most powerful and violent criminal organizations currently operating in the Republic of Mexico, with distribution cells throughout the United States. Through a union of groups, the Sinaloa cartel became responsible for the manufacture, acquisition, storage, importation, and distribution of multi-ton quantities of cocaine, methamphetamine, and marijuana from Mexico into the United States, as well as the transportation of millions of dollars from the United States to Mexico.

Although originally a part of the Sinaloa cartel, Arturo Beltran-Leyva broke ties with the organization in 2008 and established the Arturo Beltran Leyva (ABL) drug trafficking organization with several other former Sinaloa cartel members. Today, the ABL is responsible for the procurement of arms and ammunitions from the United States in furtherance of their criminal enterprise and is responsible for the trafficking of illicit drugs, including cocaine, marijuana, heroin, and methamphetamine. The ABL is also credited with rising rates of violence within Mexico, as they are reportedly responsible for kidnapping, torture, murder, and various other acts of violence against numerous men, women, and children in Mexico. The ABL’s enforcement arm, the Fuerzas Armadas de Arturo, is considered one of the most ruthless and brutal in the way they dispose of their enemies. The organization is connected with the assassinations of numerous Mexican law enforcement officials.

Edgar Valdez-Villarreal was a high-ranking member of the ABL drug trafficking organization and was believed to be responsible for collecting tariffs at all drug plazas controlled by the organization in Mexico. Valdez-Villarreal was Arturo Beltran-Leyva’s most trusted lieutenant and hit man. He also led the Fuerzas Armadas de Arturo, a group of assassins responsible for a majority of the killings committed by the drug trafficking organization. He was a key player in the bloody turf war for control of the Interstate 35 smuggling route into the U.S., and, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration, the person most responsible for pushing the battle into central and southern Mexico. Valdez-Villarreal is charged in a 1998 two count indictment in the Southern District of Texas and a 2002 two count indictment in the Eastern District of Louisiana. Valdez-Villarreal was arrested by Mexican authorities in August 2010.

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