United States Turned Over “El Güero” Palma to Mexican Authorities

Mexico City, June 15, 2016 — Today, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents turned Hector Luis “El Güero” Palma Salazar over to Mexican authorities.  Palma had been released from the United States Bureau of Prisons on June 11 and was held in temporary custody by ICE pending his repatriation.

Palma was arrested by Mexican authorities in 2002 on a U.S.-issued Provisional Arrest Warrant, and served five years in a Mexican prison under that warrant while his extradition to the United States was being processed, in accordance with the 1978 Mexico-U.S. Extradition Treaty.  After extradition, Palma pled guilty before a United States court and was sentenced to 16 years for transporting 50 kilos of cocaine. 

Under U.S. Federal sentencing practices, the five years Palma spent in a Mexican prison counted as time served under the U.S. sentence.  As part of the U.S. Bureau of Prisons’ system-wide incentive scheme for good behavior, Palma was scheduled for release after having served 85% of his sentence.

The United States and Mexico enjoy strong cooperation in security, including a healthy extradition relationship under our robust bilateral extradition treaty.  The U.S. government is committed to continuing to strengthen this relationship.

For further questions regarding Palma’s sentence or release, we refer you to the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C. or to the Bureau of Prisons.