By Gangsters Inc. Editors
When it was first discovered that drug cartels were now using submarines to smuggle their product minds around the world were blown. Nowadays, it’s part of the business and hardly raises an eyebrow. Six men pleaded guilty on Monday to plotting to smuggle cocaine into the US using “Narco-Subs”.
The men were part of a crew that dispatched self-propelled semi-submersible vessels, sometimes known as narco-submarines, from Colombia into the Pacific Ocean, destined for Sinaloa Cartel members in Oaxaca, Mexico.
They served various roles and responsibilities such as overseeing security at the submarine construction sites and building the fiberglass hulls for these vessels. 40-year-old Fernando Pineda-Jimenez was identified as, and admitted to, being the boss of the organization. He was nicknamed “Padrino” as a result.
The U.S. interdicted three submarine vessels in international waters in July and August 2015, and March 2016. The vessels had departed from Colombia and were on their way to Mexico. The first sub carried approximately 6,900 kilograms of cocaine, the August 2015 sub carried approximately 6,845 kilograms of cocaine, and the March 2016 sub contained approximately 5,824 kilograms of cocaine.
In total, the submarine vessels carried over 19,000 kilograms (or nearly 42,000 pounds) of cocaine. A substantial portion of that cocaine was ultimately intended for the U.S. A separate submarine, linked to Rodrigo Pineda-Torres, was seized in October 2017 in Colombia before it could be loaded with cocaine.
Fernando Pineda-Jimenez and his crew members pleaded guilty to drug conspiracy charges and all face a minimum mandatory of 10 years in federal prison and a maximum term of life in prison.
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