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 Treasury Designates Key Associates of Colombian Drug Lord Daniel Rendon Herrera as Narcotics Traffickers


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WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) today designated 15 individuals and eight companies as Specially Designated Narcotics Traffickers for their ties to Colombian narcotics trafficker Daniel Rendon Herrera (a.k.a. "Don Mario").   Today's action, pursuant to the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Designation Act (Kingpin Act), prohibits U.S. persons from conducting financial or commercial transactions with the designees and freezes any assets they may have under U.S. jurisdiction.

Daniel Rendon Herrera, identified as a drug kingpin by President Obama in May 2009 pursuant to the Kingpin Act, has extensive drug transportation networks throughout Colombia that have facilitated the shipment of cocaine to the United States and Europe.   Rendon Herrera was arrested by Colombian authorities in April 2009, and the United States is seeking his extradition.   Daniel Rendon Herrera and his brother Freddy Rendon Herrera face federal narcotics importation and narco-terrorism conspiracy charges in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York pursuant to a June 2009 indictment.  

"Today's designation builds on the President's May 2009 identification of Daniel Rendon Herrera by attacking the financial underpinnings of his network of criminal supporters, trusted financial managers, and front companies," said OFAC Director Adam J. Szubin. 

Today's OFAC designation targets key members of the Daniel Rendon Herrera drug trafficking organization, including Freddy Rendon Herrera ("El Aleman"), Jhon Freddy Manco Torres ("El Indio"), Camilo Torres Martinez ("Fritanga"), and Juan Felipe Sierra Fernandez.   OFAC also targeted leaders of criminal groups, known as Bandas Criminales, or BACRIM, in Colombia that are associated with Rendon Herrera, including Juan de Dios Usuga David, Dairo Antonio Usuga David, Walter Ochoa Guisao, Jose Maria Negrete Luna, Roberto Vargas Gutierrez, and Arnulfo Sanchez Gonzalez. BACRIM is a general term for criminal organizations that operate in specific zones of control throughout Colombia and are involved in a wide range of criminal activities, including drug trafficking, drug debt collections, arms trafficking, money laundering, extortion, kidnappings, and assassinations. The BACRIM criminal groups absorbed demobilized paramilitary members of the Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia (a.k.a. AUC) and other drug trafficking organizations in Colombia.

Treasury also today designated Rendon Herrera's key frontmen based in Antioquia, Colombia: Julio Alberto Toro Osorio, Julio Cesar Nino Cardenas, and Carlos Mario Salazar Cardenas.  Today's action targets companies owned or controlled by members of the Rendon Herrera drug trafficking organization, including private security companies Control Total Ltda., Vigilar Colombia Ltda., and Caninos Profesionales Ltda.; auto dealerships Mi Carro E.U. and Renta Camperos Uraba Ltda.; vehicle repair shops Centro de Diagnostico Automotriz Eje Bananero S.A. and Repuestos El Nato y Cia. Ltda.; and a large scale farm Agropecuaria Hato Santa Maria Ltda.  The companies are located in the cities of Medellin, Envigado, and Apartado in Antioquia, Colombia.

Today's action is part of ongoing efforts under the Kingpin Act to apply financial measures against significant foreign narcotics traffickers worldwide.   Including today's action, more than 600 businesses and individuals around the world associated with 82 drug kingpins have been designated pursuant to the Kingpin Act since June 2000.   Penalties for violations of the Kingpin Act range from civil penalties of up to $1.075 million per violation to more severe criminal penalties.   Criminal penalties for corporate officers may include up to 30 years in prison and fines up to $5 million.   Criminal fines for corporations may reach $10 million.   Other individuals face up to 10 years in prison and fines pursuant to Title 18 of the United States Code for criminal violations of the Kingpin Act.



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