Rafael Caro Quintero, Narcotics Rewards Program

NAME: Rafael Caro-Quintero
DOB: October 24, 1952
POB: Mexico
HEIGHT: 6’0”
WEIGHT: 160 pounds

Rafael Caro-Quintero is a Mexican drug trafficker who founded the now-disintegrated Guadalajara Cartel with Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo and other drug traffickers in the 1970s and was allegedly responsible for the cultivation, shipment, and distribution of large qualities of marijuana into the United States from Mexico.

From 1982 to 1984, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Special Agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena investigated the drug trafficking organization of Caro-Quintero and others in Mexico. The DEA investigation led to drug seizures that severely damaged the organization.

Beginning in 1984, members of the Caro-Quintero organization allegedly engaged in a series of actions to retaliate against the DEA and in 1985, Caro-Quintero and others allegedly murdered John Clay Walker and Alberto Radelat, U.S. nationals who were mistakenly thought to be DEA agents. Later in 1985, Caro-Quintero and others allegedly kidnapped, tortured, and murdered Agent Camarena and Alfredo Zavala Avelar, a pilot who was assisting Special Agent Camarena.

After the murders, Caro-Quintero fled to Costa Rica but was later arrested and extradited back to Mexico, where he was sentenced to 40-years in prison for murder. Following his arrest, the Guadalajara Cartel disintegrated, and its leaders were incorporated into the Tijuana Cartel, Sinaloa Cartel, and Juárez Cartels.

Caro-Quintero was freed from jail on August 9, 2013 after a Mexican state court concluded that he had been tried improperly. However, a Mexican federal court issued an arrest warrant against Caro-Quintero on August 14, 2013. He is a wanted fugitive in Mexico, the U.S., and several other countries.

Caro-Quintero was indicted in the United States Central District of California with violations of kidnapping and murder of a federal agent, conspiracy to kidnap a federal agent, violent crimes in aid of racketeering, conspiracy to commit violent crimes in aid of racketeering, aiding and abetting, accessory after the fact, possession with intent to distribute marijuana and cocaine, and continuing criminal enterprise.

The United States Department of State is offering a REWARD OF UP TO $20 MILLION for information leading to the arrest and/or conviction of Rafael Caro-Quintero.

If you have information and are located outside of the United States, please contact the nearest United States Embassy or Consulate. If in the United States, please contact the local Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), or Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) office in your city. Government officials and employees are not eligible for rewards.


U.S. Department of State

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