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GetSmart About Drugs - A DEA Resource for Parents

News Release
February 1, 2007

Colombian Cocaine Kingpin Sentenced to 40 Years in Prison

FEB 1 -- (MIAMI) - Mark R. Trouville, Special Agent in Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Miami Field Division and Paul I. Perez, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Florida (MDFL), announced that Joaquin Mario Valencia-Trujillo, of Cali, Colombia, was sentenced in federal court, in Tampa, for his role as a Colombian cocaine kingpin. Valencia-Trujillo was sentenced to a prison term of 40 years and ordered to forfeit $110 million. Valencia-Trujillo was convicted, in October 2006, by a jury in the MDFL of all charges. Valencia-Trujillo was charged in August 2002 with engaging in a continuing criminal enterprise, conspiracy to import cocaine, conspiracy to distribute cocaine and conspiracy to engage in money laundering. After his arrest in Bogotá, Colombia, in January 2003, Valencia-Trujillo was extradited to the MDFL.

During the four month trial, government witnesses depicted Valencia-Trujillo as the cocaine supplier for Salvatore Magluta and Guillermo "Willie" Falcon, dating back as early as the late 1970s. Testimony further described Valencia-Trujillo as the supplier of more than 100 tons of cocaine annually to the U.S. since the early 1990s until his arrest in January 2003. In accordance with the extradition agreement with Colombia, the jury's verdict and the court's sentence were based solely upon Valencia-Trujillo's post December 17, 1997 activities.

Mr. Perez stated, "The Valencia-Trujillo case serves as another example of the cooperation and commitment of the United States and Colombia to the counterdrug effort. The human misery and societal cost for which this defendant is responsible is immeasurable. The punishment is well-deserved and long overdue." The investigation and prosecution was the result of the efforts of agents and analysts from the DEA, Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, U.S. Marshals Service, Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, Sarasota County Sheriff's Office and the Colombian National Police.

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