Mexican soccer legend Rafael Marquez and Norteño singer Julion Alvarez are among 22 people who were sanctioned by the United States Treasury for allegedly having ties to a drug trafficking organization.
According to the Associated Press, the sanctions stem from a “multi-year investigation” of suspected drug trafficker Raul Flores Hernandez, who is based in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico. Flores works independently but reportedly has ties to the Sinaloa and Jalisco Nueva Generacion cartels.
Marquez, Alvarez and the others named by the U.S. Treasury were described as people who “acted as front persons for him and his (drug trafficking organization) and held assets on their behalf.”
OFAC Kingpin action targets 22 Mexican Nationals & 43 entities—the largest Kingpin designation against a Mexican drug network pic.twitter.com/RaGfecYahf
— Treasury Department (@USTreasury) August 9, 2017
What does this mean for Marquez and Alvarez? According to the Associated Press, they will have their U.S. assets frozen and U.S. citizens will be forbidden from doing business with them. A soccer team and casino in Mexico are among 43 entities that will also be sanctioned, according to a statement released by the U.S. Treasury.
Marquez, 38, is currently playing with Atlas F.C. of Liga MX. Marquez, who previously played for Barcelona, Monaco and Hellas Verona, is widely considered the best player of his generation and one of the best Mexican players of all time.
Alvarez was most recently touring in Mexico in support of his latest album “Ni Diablo Ni Santo,” which was released earlier this year. At the time of this writing, neither Marquez nor Alvarez have released statements in response to the allegations.
Julion Alvarez took to Facebook to say his conscience was clear, saying they the allegations against him are the result of “envy, jealousy and possibly politics.”
Posted by Julion Alvarez on Wednesday, August 9, 2017
Mexico’s Attorney General’s office announced that Rafael Marquez voluntarily appeared before them to provide a statement.
El comunicado de la PGR para informar sobre la declaración voluntaria del jugador de Atlas. pic.twitter.com/23QsY3WmcC
— PressPort (@PressPortmx) August 9, 2017
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