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U.S. Judge in Chicago gives feds two months to respond to torture claims made by top Sinaloa Cartel operative

December 6, 2017  |  Posted by: JammedUp Staff
U.S. Judge in Chicago gives feds two months to respond to torture claims made by top Sinaloa Cartel operative

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A federal judge in Chicago has given federal law enforcement officials a deadline to provide a response to allegations of torture made by a high-level figure within Mexico’s Sinaloa Cartel.

During a brief court hearing on Tuesday, U.S. District Chief Judge Ruben Castillo gave Justice Department prosecutors two months to respond to what he called “very serious allegations” of torture made by Jesus Raul Beltran-Leon, the reputed head of security and bodyguard for Ivan Archivaldo and Jesus Alfredo Guzman Salazar, the sons of Mexican drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman.

Mexican authorities extradited Beltran-Leon to Chicago in January to face drug trafficking charges in a 2009 federal indictment filed against “Chapo” Guzman and members of his criminal organization.

Guzman currently remains jailed in a New York City federal lockup awaiting trial for a separate 17-count drug trafficking and racketeering indictment filed in Brooklyn Federal Court.

During Tuesday’s hearing, the cartel operative’s attorney Stephen Ralls filed documents demanding feds turn over evidence on the interrogation, in which the torture was alleged to have taken place, The Chicago Sun-Times reports.

The wanted poster in Mexico for Jesus Raul Beltran-Leon.

Beltran-Leon said authorities stormed his parents home during a raid in Culiacan, Mexico in November 2014.

His attorney says masked soldiers threatened Beltran-Leon and his family before he was blindfolded, bound and beaten by law enforcement agents.

Beltran-Leon claims in court filings that he witnessed several English-speaking Americans presumed to be DEA agents who were present during the raid and when the torture occurred.

Additionally, Ralls states that his client “endured extensive torture” by the arresting officers, who demanded information on the whereabouts of Guzman’s sons.

Beltran-Leon was the alleged head of security for Ivan Archivaldo and Jesus Alfredo Guzman-Salazar, the sons of ‘El Chapo’

“The invaders punched Jesus violently and threatened to kill him. Via lights attached to the intruders’ rifles, Jesus was able to distinguish helmets, goggles, ski masks, bulletproof vests and numerous guns. Because none of the invaders identified themselves as government agents or provided any type of warrant, Jesus believed he was being kidnapped,” the filing states.

“While en route to the kitchen, the group repeatedly bludgeoned Jesus on the back of his head and neck with their fists and with hard objects. In the kitchen, Jesus’ abductors held him down, placed plastic bags over Jesus’ face, and began to asphyxiate him while others punched him in the abdomen, which forced the air in Jesus’ lungs to expel faster.”

According to Ralls, the torture continued for over an hour during which Betran-Leon “briefly lost consciousness several times due to the lack of oxygen and intense pain, This conduct firmly convinced Jesus that his death was imminent,” the attorney wrote.

U.S. government conceded in court filings last week that DEA agents at the time were working with Mexican Marines in the region to capture Beltran-Leon and other top Sinaloa Cartel operatives lending some credence to the allegations.

However, DEA officials maintained in the court papers that the agents “did not respond to the scene.”

Federal prosecutors have until February to respond to the torture allegations.

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