U.S.-Born Drug Kingpin “La Barbie” Captured in Mexico
Edgar “La Barbie” Valdez Villarreal, a notorious leader of the Beltran Leyva cartel, was arrested on Monday in the latest victory for Mexican President Felipe Calderon‘s all-out war against drug gangs.
Police said “La Barbie,” a Texas-born Mexican-American, was captured in the state of Mexico just near the capital Mexico City after a yearlong surveillance and other intelligence work. Valdez is wanted in the U.S. after he was charge earlier this year in an Atlanta court for trafficking of thousands of pounds of cocaine from Mexico to the United States.
“La Barbie,” a moniker given to Valdez for his doll-like looks, has been fighting for control of the Beltran Leyva cartel with the brother of the group’s founder, Arturo Beltran Leyva, who was killed in December after shooting it out with soldiers in the city of Cuernavaca. Mexican authorities have yet to announce if Valdez would be extradited to the U.S., which has offered $2 million for the 37-year-old drug lord’s capture.