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Sherman, Texas News

Guatemalan Man Extradited to U.S. for Drug Trafficking Charges

U.S. Attorney Damien M. Diggs announced the extradition of Juan Jose Morales-Cifuentes, 33, also known as Pancho, from Guatemala to the United States to face international drug trafficking charges in the Eastern District of Texas.

According to information presented in court, the Los Pochos drug trafficking organization (DTO), based in Guatemala and Mexico, supplies multi-ton quantities of cocaine to multiple high-level Guatemala- and Mexico-based heads of cocaine trafficking cells. The Los Pochos DTO supplies vast quantities of cocaine to Sinaloa Cartel leaders who have an existing transportation infrastructure to receive, consolidate, and transport the cocaine to markets in the United States.

Morales-Cifuentes is a Guatemala-based cocaine distributor and transportation coordinator associated with the Sinaloa Cartel and the son-in-law of deceased significant foreign narcotics trafficker Erik Salvador Suñiga Rodriguez. Morales Cifuentes is notorious for using violence to resolve conflicts and has engaged in executions of former associates in furtherance of the Los Pochos DTO’s narcotics trafficking activities. Mexican traffickers pay taxes to Morales Cifuentes to store their narcotics in the Guatemalan border towns of Tecun Uman and San Marcos. The organization purchases approximately 4,000 kilograms of cocaine monthly, totaling approximately 48,000 kilograms yearly, and is responsible for supplying multiple high-level Guatemalan and Mexican drug traffickers, including Mexico-based cartel leaders. Morales Cifuentes was extradited from Guatemala to the United States on May 16, 2024.

On June 15, 2023, a grand jury in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas charged Morales-Cifuentes with multiple crimes, including conspiracy to manufacture and distribute cocaine, intending, knowing, and having reasonable cause to believe it would be unlawfully imported to the United States.

The extradition is part of an effort by the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) to dismantle criminal organizations that pose a threat to the U.S. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at

The investigation involved multiple agencies, including the North Texas Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Homeland Security Investigations, the U.S. Marshals Service, and Customs and Border Protection.

The Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs played a significant role in securing Morales Cifuentes' arrest and extradition. Assistant U.S. Attorney Wes Wynne is prosecuting the case.

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