A Mexican drug lord and fugitive on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted list is now trying to present himself as poor in a bid to avoid arrest.
Rafael Caro-Quintero, who is accused of having a role in the 1985 abduction, torture and murder of DEA agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena, said in a legal appeal that he has no money, is too old to work and has no pension.
The odd plea was filed Tuesday by Caro-Quintero’s lawyer seeking an injunction against his arrest or extradition to the United States. After spending years in prison in Mexico, Caro-Quintero was freed in 2013, a decision that angered Washington.
“The plaintiff argues insolvency, because he says he is more than 60 years old, is neither retired nor has a pension, and given the fact that he is a fugitive from the law, cannot work or perform any activity to earn money,” read the papers, according to The Associated Press.
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However, the U.S. government says Caro-Quintero and his family remain in the lucrative drug trade.
A Mexican federal court has issued a warrant for his re-arrest, but as of Thursday he remains at large.
Around the time of Camarena’s death, the DEA was utilizing a series of wiretaps to make sizeable drug busts in Mexico. One of them cost Rafael Caro-Quintero $2.5 billion.
In February 1985, as Camarena left to meet his wife for lunch outside the U.S. consulate in Guadalajara, he was surrounded by officers from the DFS, a Mexican intelligence agency that no longer exists.
The DFS agents took Camarena, blindfolded and held at gunpoint, to one of Caro-Quintero’s haciendas five miles away.
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For more than 30 hours, Caro-Quintero and others interrogated Camarena and crushed his skull, jaw, nose and cheekbones with a tire iron. They broke his ribs, drilled a hole in his head and tortured him with a cattle prod. As Camarena lay dying, Caro-Quintero ordered a cartel doctor to keep the U.S. agent alive.
The 37-year-old’s body was found dumped on a nearby ranch about a month later. Caro-Quintero was convicted in the kidnapping and murder, but was mistakenly released from a Mexican prison in 2013.
Fox News’ William La Jeunesse and The Associated Press contributed to this report.