The transfer of 515 kilos of cocaine through the Escondido River, in Puerto Barrios, Izabal, has captured alleged drug traffickers, and exposed the corruption in the justice system of that department, as wiretaps incriminate judges.
At the hearing of the first statement of the detainees, wiretaps suggest that judges received money in exchange for granting freedom to those accused of drug trafficking.
The anti-narcotics investigators of the National Civil Police (PNC) and the Public Ministry (MP) since the beginning of the year followed up on a structure that was in charge of drug trafficking in Puerto Barrios.
Its headquarters of operations was a house located in the La Esperanza neighborhood, adjacent to the Escondido River, which two kilometers ahead connects to the Bay of Amatique, on the Atlantic Ocean.
The Río Escondido was the route to bring drugs that was transported to the bay, then it was taken to the house and there it was loaded and left in a vehicle to continue its transfer to Mexico, but on September 25, this entire plan was frustrated by anti-narcotics forces and a cocaine shipment valued at Q53 million was seized.
You listen and money
The judge of Higher Risk B, Miguel Ángel Gálvez, this Tuesday authorized the Transnational Crimes Prosecutor’s Office to reproduce in the hearing of the first statement wiretaps that were made to the alleged drug traffickers Julio Lemus Calderón, Óscar Lemus Cárcamo and Gerardo Fajardo López.
In one of the wiretaps Gerardo Fajardo López assured that he spoke with Carlos (Carlos Humberto Ramírez Escobar), the secretary of the Criminal, Drug Trafficking and Environmental Crimes Court of Puerto Barrios and clarified that the judge, Édgar Aníbal Arteaga López, had accepted payments.
“Carlos called the old man [el juez Édgar Aníbal Arteaga López] and he said yes, it was good that he gave them and that if he let some [a presuntos narcotraficantes] that they caught in Mariscos with dollars and drugs, there is no problem with them ”, was reproduced when listening to Fajardo López.
The price, according to those conversations captured by the Prosecutor’s Office, the payment for the freedom of each one of the captured was 500, the prosecutor at the hearing explained to Judge Gálvez that it has yet to be determined whether they referred to the payment of “Q500, US $ 500 or Q500 thousand ”.
Secretary Carlos Humberto Ramírez Escobar was present at the hearing and shook his head in denial every time he was mentioned by prosecutors and in wiretaps.