One of Honduras’s most prolific and elusive drug trafficking kingpins was captured this week by Drug Enforcement Administration agents working in conjunction with local law enforcement officials in that country’s capital city of Tegucigalpa. The kingpin, Hector Emilio Fernandez, was wanted by judicial authorities in the United States and has had a request for extradition from the US pending against him since early last year. He is accused of leading one of the largest drug cartels in the world. There has been a great deal of speculation among DEA agents and federal law enforcement officials in Honduras and other countries familiar with his drug trafficking organization that Fernandez was working in close association with Luis Alonso, Jose Inocente, and Miguel Arnulfo – better known to the drug world as the Valle Valle brothers, leaders of another notoriously prolific and dangerous drug cartel.
The Valle Valle brothers are currently in prison in Honduras and are wanted by the United States for drug trafficking. They were captured and arrested in an operation last week after being identified recently by the DEA, the US Treasury Department, and other federal agencies as drug lords in accordance with “Kingpin Act” legislation. The Valle Valle brothers also have a sister, Digna Azucena, who was working part of their operation in the United States. She was arrested this summer and is currently in jail in South Florida.
The DEA has also submitted an extradition request for another suspected drug kingpin from Honduras, Juving Alexander Peralta, who was captured and arrested in September. Peralta was the first Honduran citizen to be extradited to the United States. He was tried in federal court in Florida and convicted to several drug trafficking crimes. Honduras is one of the main conduits through which drug traffickers in Central and South America ship their drugs to the US. Thus far in 2014, authorities in Central America working with DEA agents in the United States have seized over three tons of illegal drugs in Central America, most of which has been cocaine, and made several arrests and extraditions with more expected.