International DTO Leader Sentenced in Operation Go Explorer
Trafficking Nearly Four Tons of Cocaine
RICHMOND, Va., – A Guatemalan national was sentenced today to 17 and a half years in prison for his role as a transportation manager in a large-scale Guatemalan drug trafficking organization (DTO).
According to court documents, between 2015 and 2016, Edi Barrera-Salguero, 46, conspired to distribute thousands of kilograms or more of cocaine. Barrera-Salguero, who was extradited to the United States on February 4, 2021, served as a transportation manager for the DTO. In this leadership role, Barrera-Salguero organized cocaine transportation networks, directed the movement of cocaine loads, and directed the movement of bulk cash.
Operating throughout Central America, Barrera-Salguero orchestrated the movement of 3,586 kilograms of cocaine from Costa Rica to Guatemala. In June 2016, Barrera-Salguero coordinated the transportation of 381 kilograms of cocaine from Costa Rica to Guatemala City, Guatemala. Once the cocaine arrived in Guatemala, the 381 kilograms of cocaine were seized by Guatemalan law enforcement authorities during a traffic stop in the vicinity of Barrera-Salguero’s commercial trucking business, “Importada La Zarza Encendida.”
On July 1, 2020, Luis Pedro Fuentes Amaya, a co-defendant of Barrera-Salguero, was sentenced to 192 months for his role in the cocaine trafficking conspiracy on behalf of the DTO.
This prosecution is part of the Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) Operation Go Explorers. Jarod Forget, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Washington Division, and Raj Parekh, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia made the announcement after sentencing by Senior U.S. District Judge Henry E. Hudson.