Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa, issued the following statement regarding the decision by a Mexican court to release convicted drug lord Rafael Caro Quintero. Quintero is responsible for the 1985 kidnapping, torturing and murder of Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent Enrique "Kiki" Camarena. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
"The decision by a Mexican federal court to release convicted drug lord Rafael Caro Quintero 12 years early is deeply troubling and we must impress upon the Mexican authorities the importance of combating these drug lords who wreak havoc upon both our nations. This convicted drug lord was responsible for the kidnapping, torturing, and murder of DEA Special Agent Enrique "Kiki' Camarena in 1985. This incident must be rectified and we must re-examine the future of the Merida Initiative that was launched in 2007 aimed at combating drug trafficking, improving the capacity of the judicial system, and strengthening the rule of law.
"Caro Quintero is considered one of the "grandfathers' of Mexican drug trafficking, and this decision to release him early is an insult to the memory of Camarena and his family, and damages the credibility and willingness of the Mexican authorities to combat the drug trafficking epidemic. I urge the Peña Nieto Administration to strongly condemn this decision, re-capture Caro Quintero as soon as possible and extradite him to the United States."