November 15, 2023
A five-year investigation being conducted by Judge Federico Villena in Buenos Aires has finally culminated in the arrests of several individuals who are being accused of not only trafficking drugs but also laundering money and falsifying the U.S. dollar exchange rate in order to make a profit. Two of these individuals are familiar faces to those who follow the media and online trends.
Agustin Estrada Palomeque, the alleged financier of the illegal operation, went viral online last week. In the viral video, Palomeque can be heard making fatphobic comments about a flight attendant on the airline Aerolineas Argentinas. He also made the claim that the airline is being managed by thieves and idiots.
Ivo Rojnica is also well known online as “The Croatian.” He has also been featured on the media as the Argentinean government has been cracking down on informal U.S. dollar exchange platforms.
Rojnica owns Nimbus, which is the biggest informal exchange house in Buenos Aires. As a result, Rojnica has been highlighted in several recent news media pieces. Several outlets as well as the Financial Research Unit have called for Rojnica’s arrest due to his money laundering. The investigation into these claims has been ongoing for about three weeks.
While the investigation into the money laundering was being conducted, Rojnica was arrested on totally unrelated money laundering charges related to drug trafficking. Augustin Palomeque was also arrested in connection with the drug trafficking scheme. A third unnamed individual was also arrested. Authorities believe that all three detainees were bringing money into Argentina to finance a drug trafficking operation.
While nothing is confirmed yet, it’s suspected that the trio was using Nimbus, the exchange platform, to steal money for their drug schemes. Back in 2017, at least two tons of cocaine were seized from the group, and the US DEA was also involved in this investigation, too.
Authorities raided one home, which they believe to be the main office of Nimbus. There, they discovered money and weapons including five pistols and two special caliber revolvers.
Global Drug Charges
The global war on drugs, led by the US government, had its time in the limelight, but public perception surrounding the serious issue has started to shift. Even the United Nations has started to call for the end of the ‘war on drugs’ due to its impact on citizens around the globe.
Despite that, laws surrounding controlled substances and trafficking them can be very extreme depending on what part of the world you’re in. In Buenos Aires, for instance, trafficking drugs can result in a penalty of up to six years in prison. In China, capital punishment is a legal penalty for trafficking drugs.
Have you recently been charged with a drug crime in a foreign country? If so, then you need to get well versed in the law immediately, and you also need to know what type of rights you’ll have in a foreign country as an accused individual.
Schedule a consultation with our office now to empower yourself to handle your international charges.