A three-year investigation led by the FBI's Boston field office netted a cartel kingpin's cousin, 346 kilos of cocaine, and the discovery of a new trafficking route from Spain to New Hampshire.

Three members of the Sinaloa Cartel, including the first cousin of leader Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman-Loera, were arrested on drug conspiracy charges, announced United States Attorney John P. Kacavas.

Manuel Jesus Guttierez Guzman, Rafael Humberto Celaya Valenzuela, and Samuel Zazueta Valenzuela were arrested in the port city of Algeciras, Spain, on Aug. 7 by the FBI and Spanish National Police.

The seized cocaine was shipped by the cartel during the undercover operation. Authorities also seized heroin and methamphetamine in May in Detroit that was tendered by the cartel as partial payment for costs incurred in previously scheduled but aborted shipments of cocaine.

Also arrested in Spain was Jesus Soto, an individual who was sent to Spain by the cartel to monitor the safety of the shipment of cocaine.

A New Hampshire grand jury indicted the suspects with conspiracy to distribute 1,000 or more kilograms of cocaine. Undercover agents met with cartel members in New Hampshire, Florida, and the Virgin Islands to discuss the drug distribution scheme. The Boston Police Department and FBI led the investigation.

Related:

A Field Guide to Mexican Drug Cartels

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