A judge in Nicaragua on June 20 ruled that the man who allegedly plotted the fatal attack on revered Argentine folk-singer Facundo Cabral last year will be charged in the Central American country for drug trafficking and money laundering. Costa Rican national Alejandro Jimenez Gonzalez AKA “Palidejo” is currently being tried in Guatemala, where Cabral was killed last year. The criminal court in Managua said it would prosecute another 20 people accused of running a trafficking network that stretched from Costa Rica to Mexico. Nicaraguan police arrested 11 of Palidejo’s associates last month—including Julio César Osuna, a former judge who once served on Nicaragua’s electoral council. Osuna’s brother was also among the detained.
In Guatemala, Palidejo is accused of hiring gunmen to kill a nightclub owner who stole a cocaine shipment from him. But the hitmen apparently instead killed Cabral, who was traveling in a car with the club owner. Palidejo also faces money laundering charges in Costa Rica, where prosecutors have linked him to two narco mafias—Colombia’s Rastrojos and Mexico’s Familia Michoacana. (InSight Crime, June 22; Nuevo Diario, Managua, June 21)
A Facundo Cabral homage website notes that last month he would have turned 75.