HomeNewsBriefHonduras Extradites Ex-Cop With Alleged Drug Ties to US
BRIEF

Honduras Extradites Ex-Cop With Alleged Drug Ties to US

EXTRADITION / 16 OCT 2015 BY ELYSSA PACHICO EN

A former police intelligence agent became the eighth criminal suspect that Honduras has extradited to the United States to face drug trafficking charges in just over a year. 

Wilmer Carranza Bonilla was arrested in June 2015, accused of working with the Valle Valle drug trafficking organization. On October 15, he was handed over to Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents and put on a plane to the US, where a federal court in Virginia had indicted him for involvement in money laundering and drug trafficking. 

That same court had previously indicted Miguel Arnulfo and Luis Alonso Valle Valle, the two brothers who lead the drug trafficking clan. 

Honduras passed a law in 2012 that permitted the extradition of suspects charged with drug trafficking and terrorism, but the first alleged drug trafficker was not sent to face trial in the US until May 2014. Since then, however, Honduras has captured and extradited several high-profile drug traffickers, including the leaders of the Valle Valle clan.  

InSight Crime Analysis

It is fairly unusual for a Latin American nation to extradite a security official to the US to face charges there. Colombia has occasionally done so, but there are few comparable cases from other countries struggling with a vibrant transnational drug trade, such as Mexico, El Salvador, and Guatemala. Carranza's extradition comes as another example of how successfully the US has managed to prod Honduras into taking action against powerful narco-clans.

SEE ALSO:  Honduras News and Profiles

The Valle Valles were a prominent drug trafficking organization known for their penchant for paying off officials. Notably, when the youngest brother of the Valle Valle clan was arrested in October 2014, police said they had found a photo of him alongside the head of the Transit Police in Copan, the state where the group based its operations. 

Thus, Carranza Bonilla is unlikely to have been the only friend to the Valle Valles in the security forces. Nor was Carranza Bonilla a very high-ranking official within the police, although he did work in a unit that investigated drug trafficking crimes. Given the Valle Valles' wealth and extent of influence, it is worth questioning whether there were more powerful figures within the police, military, and political realm that they had manged to corrupt, and whether Honduras will continue to investigate who else the Valle Valle allies may include.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

EL SALVADOR / 16 AUG 2011

News network Al Jazeera has published a series of articles on organized crime and drug violence in Central America, with…

HOMICIDES / 14 JUN 2013

Honduras' military say that homicides in San Pedro Sula have fallen sharply since the military was deployed to the world's…

EXTRADITION / 3 APR 2015

Guatemala's authorities have extradited a founding member of the Mexican criminal organization the Zetas back to his homeland, the man…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Venezuela Drug Trafficking Investigation and InDepth Gender Coverage

29 APR 2022

On May 4, InSight Crime will be publishing The Cocaine Revolution in Venezuela, a groundbreaking investigation into how the Venezuelan government regulates the cocaine trade in the country. An accompanying event,…

THE ORGANIZATION

InDepth Coverage of Juan Orlando Hernández

22 APR 2022

Ever since Juan Orlando Hernández was elected president of Honduras in 2014, InSight Crime has provided coverage of every twist and turn during his rollercoaster time in office, amid growing…

THE ORGANIZATION

Venezuela's Cocaine Revolution

15 APR 2022

On May 4th, InSight Crime will publish a groundbreaking investigation on drug trafficking in Venezuela. A product of three years of field research across the country, the study uncovers cocaine production in…

LA ORGANIZACIÓN

Widespread Coverage of InSight Crime MS13 Investigation

8 APR 2022

In a joint investigation with La Prensa Gráfica, InSight Crime recently revealed that four of the MS13’s foremost leaders had been quietly released from…

THE ORGANIZATION

Informing US State Department and European Union

1 APR 2022

InSight Crime Co-director McDermott briefed the US State Department and other international players on the presence of Colombian guerrillas in Venezuela and the implication this has for both nations.  McDermott…