MEXICO CITY (AP) — A judge in Mexico ruled Wednesday that this week’s arrest of an alleged top drug cartel boss in a city bordering Texas was illegal.
The Federal Judiciary Council said in a statement that prosecutors had sought to have the Feb. 19 arrest upheld, saying he was detained while speeding in an SUV in the northern city of Matamoros, across from Brownsville.
However his defense presented video recordings from security cameras at his house showing marines arriving at the residence, entering and extracting the suspect. They also showed marines removing the SUV from its parking spot inside the property.
The statement did not name the person in question, but a Tamaulipas state government official confirmed that it was alleged Gulf cartel figure Jose Alfredo Cardenas. The official was not authorized to discuss the case publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.
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It was not immediately clear whether he had been released.
Cardenas, alias “the Accountant” and “Mr. Polite,” is nephew to the brothers and former Gulf cartel leaders Osiel and Antonio Cardenas.
The day of his arrest in Matamoros, the Mexican navy issued a statement saying that he was the presumed leader of “a criminal organization in the region.”