Australian linked to Mexican drug cartel nabbed in Cebu

May 19, 2024 Jun I. Legaspi 119 views

THE Bureau of Immigration (BI) yesterday said its operatives arrested an Australian drug trafficker suspected of being a member of the notorious Mexican Sinaloa drug cartel.

Immigration Commissioner Norman Tansingco identified the captured fugitive as 46-year-old Gregor Johann Haas.

The Australian national was arrested last May 15 in Bogo, Cebu by operatives of the BI’s Fugitive Search Unit (FSU).

Tansingco said Haas is the subject of a Red Notice by the Interpol, which stemmed from a criminal case filed against him in Indonesia.

An arrest warrant against Haas was reportedly issued last January 29 by the National Narcotics Board of Indonesia, which filed a case for drug smuggling against the suspect.

Indonesian authorities accused Haas, who has alleged links to the Sinaloa drug cartel, of being behind the attempt to smuggle into Indonesia on Dec. 11, 2023 a shipment of floor ceramics filled with more than five kilograms of the illegal drug substance methamphetamine.

The illegal drugs were seized by Indonesian authorities, who later discovered via testimonies from arrested drug couriers that the packages were sent by Haas from Guadalajara, Mexico.

Tansingco described Haas’ arrest as a major accomplishment of the BI in its continuing drive to flush out wanted foreign criminals in the country.

He described the Australian as a “high-profile fugitive” for being an alleged member of the Sinaloa cartel, a large international organized crime syndicate based in Culiacan, Sinaloa, Mexico that specializes in drug trafficking and money laundering activities.

Founded in the 1980s, the cartel reportedly operates in Mexico, and is considered to be one of the largest drug trafficking organizations in the world.

In the 90’s, the cartel is said to be headed by Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman.

The arrested Australian is now detained at the BI warden facility in Camp Bagong Diwa, Taguig City pending deportation proceedings.