San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Costa Rica arrests five suspected drug traffickers with links to Gulf Cartel

Costa Rican police on Thursday arrested five Mexican nationals suspected of having ties to Mexico’s Gulf Cartel.

Authorities also arrested four Costa Ricans in 10 separate raids on homes in San José and three towns in the Southern Zone, according to Attorney General Jorge Chavarría and drug czar Mauricio Boraschi.

The arrests included Juan Manuel García Hernández, alias “El Güero,” considered the leader of the operation in the Costa Rican capital.

Officials accused the defendants of transporting shipments of cocaine from Panama to Mexico.

Police followed the group for a year, and recent shipments of cocaine belonging to the Gulf Cartel were seized at the border between Costa Rica and Nicaragua.

Garcia “moved throughout Central America, made the decisions and facilitated the drug shipments,” Boraschi said. “He kept a low profile, moved quickly and spent little time in each country.”

Along with the arrests, authorities found 45 kilos of cocaine at a San José residence that apparently the suspects planned to send to Mexico.

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