Mexico arrests former chief law enforcement officials for torture – WISH-TV | Indianapolis Information | Indiana climate
Mexico City (AP) – Mexico said Monday it had arrested a former senior police officer almost a decade ago on charges of torture.
The former federal police commander Luis Cardenas Palomino was considered the right-hand man of the former security minister Genaro García Luna. García Luna is currently imprisoned in the United States for drug trafficking.
US prosecutors have also accused Cardenas Palomino of taking millions in bribes from the Sinaloa cartel, once run by jailed drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman. It was not clear whether Mexico would consider extraditing Cardenas Palomino.
President Andrés Manuel López Obrador hailed the arrest as a sign that Mexico would no longer tolerate corruption and abuse, but said he did not know whether Mexico would extradite Cardenas Palomino.
“He was arrested because there is no longer any impunity, and that helps a lot,” said the president, whose government was struggling to find a policy to deal with the drug cartels. López Obrador, for example, ordered the release of one of Guzman’s sons to avoid bloodshed.
The Mexican attorney general said on Monday that Cardenas Palomino had been arrested on the outskirts of Mexico City for torturing a kidnap suspect in 2012.
US prosecutors accuse García Luna of taking tens of millions of dollars in bribes to protect Guzman’s Sinaloa cartel. García Luna, who is awaiting trial in New York, denies the allegations.
In the same years Cardenas Palomino served as Commander in Chief of the Federal Police, which has since disappeared. He and García Luna were best known in Mexico for allegedly raiding television cameras in 2005 that resulted in the arrest of two suspected kidnapping suspects, despite suspects illegally arrested hours earlier.
Author José Reveles said Cardenas Palomino is “one of the main operators of García Luna” and would be “a witness with privileged information” about his former boss, adding that he would be most likely extradited.
President Andrés Manuel López Obrador cited widespread corruption and abuses in the federal police as an important factor in his decision to abolish the force in 2019 and bring some of its officers into the National Guard.