Who's Dr. Wagner, the Mexican narco arrested in Rome?
Until his arrest on 20 August at Rome's Fiumicino airport, few knew that Ramón Cristóbal Santoyo or Dr. Wagner, a Mexican mafia member of the Sinaloa Cartel, was hiding behind the image of a "businessman" with "great style".
"A distinguished gentleman, an irreproachable style. A businessman, far from the image of the somber exponent of the Mexican mafia covered in tattoos. This is how the newspaper Il Messaggero described Santoyo, known as "Dr. Wagner," and who was arrested in transit to Mexico on a stopover in Paris.
In a note titled: "Arrested in Fiumicino on ´Dr. Wagner´, leader of the narcos and partner of ´Chapo´", the newspaper explained that despite wearing designer clothes, Santoyo is "an outstanding exponent of the underworld" of drug trafficking, which was transferred to the Regina Coeli prison, which Il Messaggero describes as a "nightmare of Italian criminals", but a "paradise" for a Mexican narco who, like Santoyo, could be extradited to the United States, which claims him for drug trafficking and money laundering.
Santoyo, 43, was missing from the public scene and the Anti-Drug Agency (DEA) had issued an international arrest warrant in 2016 against the narco-trafficker, an engineer by profession.
Il Messaggero revealed, based on the arrest warrant signed by Judge María Luisa Paolicelli, that the drug trafficker coordinated the transfer of cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine from Mexico to the United States. He also says that one of his "human couriers" was arrested at a checkpoint between the Mexican state of Sonora and California, in the United States, on July 12, 2015, which caused Santoyo problems because his envoy could not deliver more than 11 million dollars of dirty money going to the Sinaloa cartel.
According to the Italian newspaper, Santoyo, the "drug businessman," also tried to bribe DEA witnesses with cocaine.
Italy is evaluating the extradition request from the United States, which is demanding that "Dr. Wagner" be sent to California for trial. Il Messaggero explains that "after a ruling by the Court of Appeal in Rome, it will be up to Justice Minister Alfonso Bonafede" to give, if appropriate, the final authorization.
Always, according to this newspaper, Santoyo is represented by the so-called "Italian lawyer of the narcos", the penalist Alessandro Sforza, who did not want to comment on the arrest when he was questioned by Il Messaggero.