Ex-DEA agent, wife, to leave Puerto Rico, face trial in US

Ex-DEA agent, wife, to leave Puerto Rico, face trial in US

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Print this page Email A Friend!

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — A former anti-drug agent and his wife, charged with diverting money from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and aiding Colombian traffickers, on Wednesday waived efforts to keep their case from being held in the US mainland.

José Irizarry clasped the leg of Nathalia Gómez-Irizarry as the couple sat quietly for an hour before the hearing, barely talking. They face a 19-count federal indictment in which Irizarry is accused of conspiring to launder millions in drug proceeds diverted from the DEA.

He joined the agency in Miami in 2009 and repeatedly won praise from superiors. He resigned in January 2018 after being transferred from Colombia to Washington.

The couple declined to speak and left the federal courtroom after the hearing.

“They are covered by the presumption of innocence,” defense attorney José Novas told The Associated Press, declining further comment.

The couple were arrested in Puerto Rico last week and released on US$10,000 bond each. They are now scheduled to appear in court in Florida next month in a case which the star witness is a former DEA informant.

Irizarry is accused of filing false reports starting around 2011 and allegedly ordered DEA staff to wire money slated for undercover stings to international accounts he controlled.

Authorities also accused him of sharing sensitive law enforcement information with co-conspirators, including a Colombian public official and an alleged drug trafficker and money launderer who is godfather to the couple's children.

Some of the money allegedly was used to buy a US$30,000 Tiffany diamond ring, a 2017 Lamborghini Huracan Spyder and a home in Puerto Rico, where the couple had been living.

Now you can read the Jamaica Observer ePaper anytime, anywhere. The Jamaica Observer ePaper is available to you at home or at work, and is the same edition as the printed copy available at http://bit.ly/epaperlive




1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper � email addresses will not be published.

2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.

3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.

4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.

5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.

6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.

7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy

comments powered by Disqus



Today's Cartoon

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon