The two rival leaders of Medellin‘s fractured drug cartel “Oficina de Envigado” met in Argentina to discuss a temporary non-aggression truce, newspaper El Tiempo reported based on sources within the U.S. Drug enforcement agency DEA.
According to the newspaper, Maximiliano Bonilla Orozco, alias “Valenciano,” and Erick Vargas Cardenas, alias “Sebastian,” two of the most wanted drug lords in the Americas, came to an agreement to divide the territories of Medellin and to temporarily cease internal fighting, at least until the upcoming October elections.
Following the 2008 extradition of former Oficina leader Don Berna to the U.S., the drug organization split, with both Sebastian and Valenciano taking control of separate divisions of the gang. The two sides have since engaged in a bloody turf war that has engulfed the city of Medellin.
According to the DEA, alias “Pepe,” a former leader in the Oficina and close associate of Don Berna, is suspected to have mediated the meeting. The DEA believes Pepe’s involvement could help to explain how the drug lords were able to pass through South American countries without being detected.
The DEA suspects that the two leaders were able to enter Rosario, Argentina, one of the most guarded cities in the country, by using Central American passports.
This is not the first truce between the two Oficina rivals. Sebastian and Valenciano came to an agreement in early 2010 to stop their feud, reportedly due to exhaustion, and also because individuals outside the gang network were increasingly committing homicides and other acts of violence, and then blaming them on either Sebastian or Valenciano.
Following the previous truce, homicide rates in Medellin dropped significantly. The peace, however, did not last long.