The head of the group’s operations in the Caribbean port city of Cartagena, “Pichi”, was also detained, delivering a significant blow to the organization, authorities said.
Cartagena is one of the Urabeños’ key Caribbean ports for the export of cocaine to Central America and later the United States or Europe.
Pichi allegedly reported directly to the leader of the entire organization, “Otoniel.”
Among the arrested included members known as “Yeison” and “Gordi Gordi”, who were implicated in the murder of Ricardo Martinez, brother of ex-mining minister Hernan Martinez. The murder, which occurred in 2010, was part of a larger attempt to extort wealthy Colombian families on the Atlantic coast.
Two aspiring politicians who hoped to get elected to the council and mayoralty of the municipality Tuchin in the Cordoba province were also arrested, charged with having links to the Urabeños.
One of the politicians ran a health insurance company and allegedly helped steer nearly $400,000 to the criminal organization.
“Los Urabeños” are known for using extortion, narco trafficking, and homicide as a means of sustaining their organization.