Feds: Top Mexican cop leaked info; informant tortured, slain
A former top Mexican cop shared a $3 million bounty in 2009 from the head of the Beltran Leyva drug cartel for identifying a DEA informant who was later kidnapped, tortured and killed, federal authorities in Chicago alleged Wednesday.
That informant had been “instrumental in securing Arturo Beltran Leyva’s indictment” in Chicago, according to a criminal complaint against Ivan Reyes Arzate, who as recently as November served as the highest-ranking member of the Mexican Federal Police’s sensitive investigations unit.
Or, as the leader of another drug cartel was told, he was “the boss.”
Arzate, 45, of Mexico City is now in custody in Chicago, accused of leaking key information to drug cartels under investigation by the United States. He has been charged with conspiracy to corruptly influence and impede an official proceeding, and he is next expected to appear in court April 13.
The feds say Arzate was “the principal direct point of contact for information sharing between U.S. and Mexican law enforcement personnel” assigned to the sensitive investigations unit. He was “provided with highly sensitive information obtained in U.S. investigations.”
Arzate allegedly leaked information about tapped phones and confidential sources to targets of U.S. investigations. The feds even caught Arzate in September, while he was still the commander of Mexico’s sensitive investigations unit, telling a DEA target he was being watched by U.S. authorities.
“They know you are here and they want to see who you hangout with,” Arzate allegedly said. “Don’t talk at all.”
Ex-Mexican Official Indicted in Chicago Cartel Secrets Case A federal grand jury in Chicago has indicted a former commander of a Mexican intelligence unit for allegedly trading secrets to a drug cartel.
The indictment posted Friday in Chicago charges Ivan Reyes Arzate with obstruction of justice and conspiracy to obstruct justice. His Chicago attorney, Joe Lopez, said Arzate will plead not guilty at his Aug. 1 arraignment.
A complaint was unsealed in April after Arzate's arrest in Chicago. It contends he divulged the identity of an informant to Mexico's Beltran Leyva cartel using intelligence given to him by U.S. agents. The informant was later tortured and killed.
Lopez describes Arzate as "a political prisoner" and says his contact with cartel figures was "a proper investigative technique." He denies Arzate ever unmasked an informant. Prosecutors in Chicago declined comment.