[JURIST] Mexican authorities on Thursday detained former Assistant Attorney General Noe Ramirez, one-time head of Mexico's anti-drug operation in the Assistant Attorney Generals Office Specializing in Organized Crime (SIEDO) [official website], accusing him of receiving monthly payments of $450,000 from the Pacifico drug cartel in exchange for confidential information regarding government anti-drug enforcement efforts. Attorney General Eduardo Medina determined that there were sufficient grounds [official statement] to detain Ramirez after questioning him Wednesday in relation to "Operation Cleaning" investigations. Ramirez, whose arrest comes as part of an ongoing investigation into drug cartels and their connections to senior law enforcement officials, had worked for 14 years [El Financiero report, in Spanish] in the Mexican Office of the Attorney General [official website].
In October, the head of the SIEDO made some of the results of the ongoing internal "Operation Cleaning" investigation public, indicating that both the agency and the US Embassy in Mexico had been infiltrated [JURIST report] by a branch of the Sinaloa drug cartel by paying officials to turn over confidential information. In November, the chief of the Federal Preventative Police, the uniformed branch of the federal police force resigned [JURIST report] in connection to the October investigation. Earlier this month, Mexico's Interior Secretary and several other high ranking anti-drug effort officials were killed in an airplane crash [JURIST report], sparking an investigation despite no obvious signs of foul play.