By Ahmed Jallow
Special to the Brooklyn Daily Eagle
A Mexican drug kingpin faces life in prison after he pleaded guilty to trafficking thousands of kilograms of cocaine and admitted involvement in more than 300 homicides in Brooklyn’s federal court on Tuesday.
Juan Carlos Nava Valencia, also known as “Tigre,” appeared before U.S. District Court Judge William F. Kuntz with a cane and limping slightly. After pleading guilty to cocaine trafficking charges, he admitted, through a translator, that he took part in hundreds of homicides.
“I have participated directly or indirectly in more than 300 homicides,” Valencia said through his translator.
Valencia pled guilty to continuing criminal enterprise, and international cocaine distribution conspiracy.
Beginning in 1990s, the defendant became one of the leaders of a drug trafficking organization known primarily as the “Nava Valencia DTO,” but also known as the “Millennium Cartel” and “La Resistencia.” The group controlled a vast narcotics transportation network involving the use of land, air and sea transportation methods, according to court documents.
The defendant also said in his statement that his criminal enterprise made about $10 million a year beginning in the 1990s. As a leader, Valencia said he oversaw the manufacturing, distribution and shipment of cocaine that ended up in the U.S.
“From 1997 to 2015, I agreed with other people to distribute thousands of kilograms to other parts of the South America knowing that this would illegally end up in U.S.,” he said.
More than 100,000 kilograms of cocaine were transported from South America through Central America and Mexico to the U.S., court documents said.
In conducting its drug trafficking, the group also corroborated with other Mexican Cartels, including the Sinaloa Cartel, which is one of Mexico’s largest and most violent cocaine cartels, according to court documents.
A date wasn’t set for Valencia’s sentencing, but he is expected back in court in December for a pre-sentencing hearing, according to the judge.