Today a Honduran judge let suspected drug operator Eduardo Elias Handal Saybe go free, for what he called lack of "compelling proof" linking him to a private home with a storage building that yielded coca leaf paste, chemicals used in the processing of cocaine, strips of lights used to light runways, and weapons.
According to the Public Prosecutor, Handal Saybe, along with the Guatemalan Juan Carlos Garcia Urbina, are heads of the Zeta's operation in Honduras. The Zetas appear to have armed the Mara Salvatrucha MS-18 in Honduras. Weapons found in the warehouse last March correspond to the same lot as weapons captured in Mexico in the hands of the Zetas, and weapons found in the hands of MS 18 prisoners in the main San Pedro Sula prison.
On the basis of what was found in the warehouse, registered in Elias Handal Saybe's name, an Interpol arrest warrant was issued for Handal. He was captured in Nicaragua on September 12 and extradited back to Honduras.
Yesterday his defense lawyer, Walter Ramirez, successfully argued that someone else had used Handal's name to register the property, and that his signature had been forged.
Handal Saybe is a partner is several limited partnerships. They include PRODUCTOS PLASTICOS INTERNACIONALES, S.A., registered in Panama, with Carlos Alberto Yacaman Meza, the assassin of Roland Valenzuela, who before his death had broadcast serious charges of US complicity in the 2009 coup.
Yacaman Meza is in prison in Florida appealing a deportation order to Honduras.
Handal Saybe remains at liberty.