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February 16, 2024San Juan, PR, United StatesNarcotics

US Marshals and HSI San Juan arrest final 2 fugitives from Operation Youngblood

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — On Feb. 15, the U.S. Marshals Service and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) San Juan arrested Christopher Maldonado-Lopez and Christian Maldonado-Lopez, the final remaining fugitives from Operation Youngblood, in Newark, New Jersey. In September 2023, Operation Youngblood dismantled the Hasta Los Marcian criminal organization in Manati.

“With these two arrests, we culminate our Operation Youngblood, which brought to justice the 42 defendants of this criminal organization. We said we were going to go after them, and we delivered thanks to the tireless work of our special agents, the teamwork of the local and municipal components, and the U.S. Marshals office,” said HSI San Juan Special Agent in Charge Rebecca Gonzalez-Ramos. “The message is clear: Drug traffickers who attempt to establish their criminal organizations on our island must know that we will not stop until they face justice for their actions. No one is above the law.”

“The U.S. Marshals have not rested on the trail of these two individuals who pretend to be above the law. Teamwork has results,” said U.S. Marshal of the District of San Juan Wilmer Ocasio-Ibarra. “With these two arrests, we have concluded with the fugitives of this violent organization that for so many years stole the peace from the community of Manati.”

HSI is the principal investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), responsible for investigating transnational crime and threats, specifically those criminal organizations that exploit the global infrastructure through which international trade, travel and finance move. HSI’s workforce of more than 8,700 employees consists of more than 6,000 special agents assigned to 237 cities throughout the United States, and 93 overseas locations in 56 countries. HSI’s international presence represents DHS’ largest investigative law enforcement presence abroad and one of the largest international footprints in U.S. law enforcement.

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