Mexico Says It Arrested 'Narco Queen' in Significant Hit to Major Cartel's Finances

Authorities in Mexico said they have arrested the wife of the leader of a major drug cartel, the Associated Press reported.

The Attorney General's office, Defense Department and National Intelligence Center announced the arrest of Rosalinda González Valencia on November 15. Mike Vigil contributed to the statement, calling her a "narco queen" with previous familial ties to drug trafficking. Vigil previously served as an international operations chief in the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

González Valencia is the wife of cartel leader Nemesio "El Mencho" Oseguera, and the government considered it a significant hit in their operation against the cartel. Authorities claim she was involved in the finances of the Jalisco New Generation cartel in Jalisco, Mexico.

"She has all of the keys, all of the confidence of 'El Mencho,'" said Vigil, "all of the information and was responsible for laundering the cartel's money."

The Jalisco New Generation cartel is considered to be Mexico's most prominent and violent, having committed several attacks on security forces and police. Gunmen affiliated with the cartel shot down a military helicopter in 2015 with a rocket-propelled grenade. The cartel has been expanding out of Jalisco into neighboring states, such as Guanajuato and Michoacan.

The cartel primarily traffics methamphetamine and fentanyl into the U.S.

For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below.

Jalisco New Generation Graffiti
The letters “CJNG” for the group’s formal name, Jalisco New Generation Cartel, is scrawled on the facade of an abandoned home, in El Limoncito in the Mexican state of Michoacan on October 30, 2021. The cartel based in Jalisco state is invading neighboring Michoacan, causing thousands of farmers to flee, with some seeking asylum in the United States. AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo

The official statement referred to her as Rosalinda "N," while a federal official commenting about the case on condition of anonymity identified her as González Valencia.

González Valencia was arrested in May of 2018 but later released.

Vigil noted that her arrest comes while two of their children are jailed in the United States. Jessica Johanna Oseguera Gonzalez, a dual U.S. and Mexican citizen, was sentenced in June to 2 1/2 years in prison for involvement in businesses laundering money for the cartel.

Her brother, Rubén, known as "El Menchito," has pleaded not guilty to drug trafficking charges but remains jailed awaiting trial.

Taking that into account, Vigil suspects their mother could be interested "in negotiating some deal to help her children."

The Jalisco cartel is known for an assassination attempt on Mexico City's police chief last year in the capital that wounded him and left three people dead.

The cartel is also reaching its tentacles into Mexico's Caribbean beach resorts in Quintana Roo. Newsweek previously reported that a cartel stormed the Caribbean coast after two people affiliated with gangs claimed the territory as theirs. It is unknown whether the Jalisco New Generation cartel was involved in the shootings.

Jalisco Highway
Authorities in Mexico said they have arrested Rosalinda González Valencia, the wife of Jalisco New Generation drug cartel leader Nemesio "El Mencho" Oseguera. Above, federal police secure the highway between Guadalajara in Jalisco state and Leon city, in Guanajuato State, Mexico, on May 1, 2015. Photo by STR/AFP via Getty Images