Cali Cartel founder Gilberto Rodriguez Orejuela died in jail in the United States.

Gilberto Rodriguez Orejuela, a senior member of the Cali cartel and a fierce adversary of Pablo Escobar, died in a US jail on Wednesday, according to his lawyer.

According to a study by the US Drug Enforcement Administration, Rodrguez Orejuela, also known by the title ‘The Chessplayer,’ helped command the Cali cartel, which once controlled 80 percent of the worldwide cocaine market.

A statement released by Gilberto Rodriguez Orejuela’s family:

“The children and wife of Gilberto Rodriguez Orejuela, unfortunately, notify that our father and husband died of lymphoma yesterday, Tuesday, May 31, 2022, at 6.54 pm,” the family wrote in a statement released by Rodrguez’s daughter Alexandra. According to the statement, his family intended to return his remains to Colombia.

Gilberto Rodriguez Orejuela died

About Rodrguez Orejuela’s arrest:

The arrest of Rodriguez Orejuela by Colombian police in 1995 signified the start of the Cali cartel’s dissolution, which had transported massive amounts of cocaine from Colombia to the United States during the 1980s and 1990s. In 2004, he was extradited to the United States and was incarcerated in a federal prison in Butner, North Carolina. For humanitarian reasons, a judge granted him early release in 2020. At the time, his attorney, David O Markus, stated that the former drug lord was suffering from a variety of health issues.

“We were heartbroken to learn of his death last night,′′ Markus remarked. ′′At this moment, our thoughts and prayers are with his family.”

About the Cali Cartel brothers; Gilberto Rodriguez Orejuela and Miguel Rodrguez:

Rodrguez Orejuela and his brother, Miguel, developed a massive criminal operation that competed for domination of Colombia’s drug trade with Pablo Escobar and his Medelln cartel associates. Unlike Escobar, who waged a full-scale assault against the Colombian government and security forces, the Cali cartel focused its violence on competing criminal organizations. They have admitted to funding political campaigns, including Liberal Party president Ernesto Samper’s 1994 campaign, which he has denied knowing about at the time.

In 1995, the brothers Rodrguez Orejuela were apprehended and sentenced to 15 years in jail. Colombian law prevented the extradition of its citizens at the time, but under US pressure, Colombia repealed the restriction in 1997.

Rodrguez Orejuela was freed from prison unexpectedly in 2002 following a contentious court judgment affirming a judge’s decision to release him after just seven years in exchange for good behavior and participation in work-study programs. In 2003, he was arrested again. Criminal charges were brought in Miami and New York after it was discovered that the brothers were continuing to traffic from prison. Gilberto was extradited in 2004, and Miguel the following year.

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