Sandra Ávila Beltrán
Ávila Beltrán is expected to be deported to Mexico by Tuesday or Thursday from El Paso. ICE also announced that 361 suspects were arrested nationwide targeting associates and members of the Mara Salvatrucha in 71 U.S. cities.
By H. Nelson Goodson
August 16, 2013
In July, a U.S. District Court of Southern Florida judge decided that Ávila Beltrán had served her time and ordered her release. Ávila Beltrán has been in the custody of ICE, since July 30.
She was extradited to the U.S. in August from Mexico. She pled guilty to a plea agreement with federal prosecutors for harbouring her former boyfriend, Juan Diego Espinoza Ramirez, aka, "El Tigre" a Colombian convicted drug dealer associated with the Sinaloa Cartel.
The Milenio Newspaper reported that Ávila Beltrán's Mexican attorney Jorge Alfonso Espino Santillan had said, Mexican federal authorities are expected to arrest his client for using drug money to operate an alleged criminal organization once she returns to Mexico. Mexican federal prosecutors have filed charges in a federal court in the state of Jalisco, according Santillan.
Ávila Beltrán was previously indicted in the U.S. for alleged charges of organized crime and importing large quantities of cocaine to the U.S. for distribution. She was wanted in the U.S. for importing at least 9.6 tons of cocaine in 2001.
She was arrested in Mexico City in 2007 for organized crime and drug trafficking, but was acquitted in 2010 by a Mexican federal judge.
In 2001, she paid several million dollars in ransom for her son's release after he was kidnapped in Mexico drawing attention to the ransom playoff by Mexican federal authorities.
Ávila Beltrán also paid to have a cosmetic doctor perform botox treatments while she was incarcerated.
Ávila Betrán was considered ruthless for her tactics used against rival drug cartel members. She is the niece of Miguel Angel Félix Gallardo, who is now serving a 40 year sentence in the U.S. for the homicide of a U.S. DEA agent in 1985.
In January 2010, her great uncle Juan José Quintero Payán, 69, was extradited to the U.S. for drug trafficing, using drug money to invest in U.S. real estate and laundering money, according to a federal indictment.
In December 2011, Payán who was the founder of the Juarez Cartel was sentenced to 18 years in prison and fined $250,000 by a federal judge in San Antonio, Texas.
In an unrelated ICE case, 361 suspects were arrested between July and August during a nationwide gang operation targeting members of the Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13), including 263 gang members and associates from 43 different gangs in 71 U.S. cities and 98 others encountered during the operation: 84 non-gang members wanted on criminal charges and 14 for immigration violations.