LA PAZ – Bolivia’s government on Friday accused a jailed former National Police commander of ties to Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman through one of the imprisoned Mexican drug trafficker’s sons.
In statements broadcast Friday by state radio, Interior Minister Hugo Moldiz said the case against Oscar Nina dates back to the arrival three years ago of a son of the notorious Mexican drug trafficker in Bolivia, apparently to take flying lessons. Bolivian media has identified the son as Jesus.
“That was, it appears, the facade under which he moved in the country. He had ties to the then Col. Nina,” Moldiz said.
Nina; his son Oscar Hugo, who is also a police officer; and Capt. Xavier Millan, his former aide, were jailed Thursday in the eastern province of Santa Cruz as part of an investigation into alleged illicit enrichment, money laundering and ties to drug traffickers.
The court hearing the case also ordered an embargo of the Nina family’s assets and the house arrest of the former police commander’s wife.
The preliminary investigation indicates that Nina’s net worth amounts to around $2 million.
One of the prosecutors investigating the case, Ana Luisa Heredia, said Wednesday that the family’s net worth is not justified by their earnings or salaries, prompting suspicion that they tried to legitimize illegal earnings.
Mexican security forces captured “Chapo” Guzman, the world’s most powerful drug trafficker, in February 2014, after he had been on the run for 13 years.
Guzman was arrested in 1993 in Guatemala and sent back to Mexico, where he was convicted of bribery. He escaped from the Puente Grande penitentiary in the western state of Jalisco on Jan. 19, 2001.
El Chapo, a fixture on Forbes magazine’s annual list of global billionaires, faces a raft of charges in both Mexico and the United States.