One of the leaders of Honduras's Cachiros drug cartel testifying at the trial of Fabio Lobo told a Federal judge yesterday that he paid enormous bribes for protection to both Porfirio Lobo Sosa, ex-President of Honduras, and to his son, Fabio.
Devis Leonel Rivera Maradiaga, one of two brothers identified by the US Treasury as the leaders of the Los Cachiros drug cartel in Honduras spent over 3 hours on the stand in the trial of Fabio Lobo for drug trafficking in the US. Los Cachiros operated as a cartel in Honduras from 2008 to 2013.
During his testimony, Rivera Maradiaga was asked if he had received assistance from Porfirio Lobo Sosa, to which he replied "Yes" indicating that the first time was in 2009 when Lobo Sosa was still a Presidential candidate for the National Party. Rivera Maradiaga testified that he paid Lobo Sosa $250,000 - $300,000 for that initial protection as a campaign contribution. Rivera Maradiaga also mentioned a second meeting with Lobo Sosa where he gave him a packet of 500 lempira bills "eight or twelve inches high". Rivera Maradiaga also testified that he was present at a third meeting, post election, with Lobo Sosa in which Lobo Sosa promised not to extradite him to the United States and said he would give them government contracts to pay back the bribe they gave him during the campaign. It was at this third meeting that Lobo Sosa designated his son, Fabio Lobo, as his intermediary for Los Cachiros and made him their contract for security.
Rivera Maradiaga testified that Fabio Lobo helped him with security arrangements on two occasions. In 2012 Fabio helped Los Cachiros with a 400 kilogram shipment of cocaine that arrived by plane. The second time, in 2013, it was a ton of cocaine. Fabio Lobo received a payment of $30,000 for the first shipment, along with several vehicles and an AR-15. Rivera Maradiaga says Fabio Lobo "asked for a bit more for the second shipment because he had to pay the Chief, that is General Tinoco."