Dominican military officers have turned on each other, US indictment shows
SANTO DOMINGO.- The request to extradite retired admiral Francisco Antonio Hiraldo Guerrero stems from confessions of former Dominican Army captain Quirino Paulino and Navy colonel Carlos Rosso Peña to U.S. authorities, on the links of the now extraditable and of other military officers to the protection drug shipments. of
Newspaper El Dia, citing source familiar with Hiraldo’s indictment in the U.S., details the dates, names and amounts of drug with which he is allegedly implicated.
In the indictment, individuals identified as W-1 and W-2 (Paulino and Rosso), who plea bargained in exchange for information to U.S. authorities, reveal how drug traffickers penetrated the very core of Dominican Republic’s Antinarcotics Agency (DNCD).
According to the indictment, the authorities first learned of Hiraldo’s actions from taped phone conversations from 2003 and 2004 between members of a drug trafficking ring, on cocaine shipments in the Dominican Republic, which they sougth to reship to the United States to distribute in the New York metropolitan area and elsewhere.
The information gathered led Dominican authorities to seize around 1,300 kilos of cocaine on or around December 18, 2004.
The individual who was to receive the cocaine in the Dominican Republic, referred to as "W-1", along with others, was arrested in the Dominican Republic shortly after the seizure, coinciding with the date of Paulino’s detention.
W-1 has been convicted in the United States and his information about Hiraldo’s collaboration led to the request to extradite the retired admiral, while local opinion makers see the revelation as the first of many senior officers –active and retired- and prominent civilians whose names also figure in the indictment.