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Guatemalan Mayor Designated By OFAC For Alleged Involvement In Smuggling Cocaine

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Last week the Federal government announced sanctions against a Guatemalan mayor, four other individuals, and five related entities on allegations that they are significant traffickers of illegal narcotics that ultimately reach the United States.

According to the U.S. Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), the mayor is a significant trafficker of illegal drugs to one of Mexico's most prominent drug cartels. As Guatemala occupies a key location for drug trafficking in Central America, participation by Guatemalan officials in evading Mexican police is of particular importance. Per OFAC, the mayor utilizes corrupt law enforcement officials to move significant quantities of cocaine over the Mexican border and eventually into the United States.

Included in the designation is the mayor's key associates in the trafficking operation, including two brothers and two half-brothers. One of the co-designees was recently arrested by Guatemalan authorities on the basis of his alleged ties to illicit drug trafficking, while another was arrested six years ago on allegations of murder, attempted murder, and for associating with drug traffickers. Another of the co-designees allegedly provides transportation services for the drug runners, while the fifth co-designee is alleged to be among the Guatemalan mayor's top lieutenants in the drug-running operation.

Five other businesses owned by the now-designated individuals were themselves designated, including two agricultural companies, a restaurant, a grocery store, and a car audio store.

As is the case with all such designations, parties are warned against engaging in business with any of the designated parties, as they themselves may be designated. Those designated by OFAC are also legally prohibited from accessing property held within the jurisdiction of the United States.

The Law Offices of Bjorn Brunvand have been representing people charged with capital murder, felony drug charges, drunk driving, government fraud, and white-collar crimes for over a quarter century. Contact our office today to discuss your Tampa Bay-area state or federal charges.

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