The FBI and Colombian officials arrested Carlos Julio Ramírez Ortega, AKA El Musulmán, for ties to CJNG and drug trafficking

Carlos Julio faces charges for cartel links; FBI and Colombian officials expose intertwined Mexico-Colombia drug networks.
  1. Carlos Julio Ramírez Ortega, a medical equipment magnate, faces arrest in Colombia for alleged deep-seated connections to major drug cartels.
  2. Investigations by the FBI and Colombian officials uncover intertwined networks between Mexico’s Four Letter Cartel and Colombia’s criminal factions.
  3. As the Sinaloa Cartel’s influence grows, both cartels deploy Mexican agricultural specialists to Colombia, aiming to boost coca leaf production and narcotics operations.

Carlos Julio Ramírez Ortega, the head of a medical and dental instrument manufacturing firm, has been apprehended in Colombia for alleged connections to drug trafficking and the Jalisco Cartel – New Generation (CJNG). This operation involved the collaborative efforts of the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Colombian law enforcement agencies.

Reports suggest that Ramírez Ortega was responsible for moving significant drug quantities into the U.S. Furthermore, he is believed to have connections with a senior member of the Gulf clan. Yet, his associations with the underworld don’t end there.

Estaba encargado del envío de cocaína a EEUU
(Foto: COLPRENSA/Archivo/Ilustrativa)
He was in charge of shipping cocaine to the US (Photo: COLPRENSA/Archivo/Ilustrativa)

“El Musulmán” and Mexican drug traffickers

Ramírez Ortega’s criminal network seems to extend beyond Colombia’s borders. He is suspected of having ties to Mexico’s Four Letter Cartel. Before his arrest, he was reportedly overseeing cocaine shipments to the U.S. and handling the finances of Juan Carlos Cuesta, also known as Gordo Rufla. Cuesta was detained in 2021 and later extradited to the U.S.

The apprehension of such a pivotal figure as Ramírez Ortega, colloquially known as El Musulman, signifies a setback for Colombian crime rings with global outreach. Historically, links between Mexican and Colombian narcotics factions have been documented.

(Europa Press/Contacto/Sebastian Marmolejo)
(Europa Press/Contacto/Sebastian Marmolejo)

In a recent revelation, the FBI discerned connections between the faction headed by Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes, popularly known as El Mencho, and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia-People’s Army (FARC-EP). Journalist Anabel Hernández uncovered these ties and indicated that U.S. officials are delving into potential collaborations between these notorious groups.


This scrutiny was heightened after a devastating explosion in Tlajomulco de Zúñiga, Jalisco, on July 11, which resulted in six fatalities and several injuries. Following this tragedy, the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) were summoned to the scene, suspecting FARC’s involvement.

An intriguing development after the explosion was the surfacing of a video from alleged CJNG affiliates. “We, the CJNG, disavow ourselves of the explosive placed in Tlajomulco de Zúñiga,” they declared, urging authorities to seek out the real perpetrators.

El Cártel de Sinaloa ha logrado llegar al país sudamericano 
(Foto: Jesús Áviles/Infobae México)
The Sinaloa Cartel has managed to reach the South American country (Photo: Jesús Áviles/Infobae Mexico).

Sinaloa Cartel also arrived in Colombia

Colombia has also seen the footprints of the Sinaloa Cartel. The Colombian Attorney General’s Office observed that both the CJNG and the Sinaloa Cartel had dispatched Mexican agricultural experts to enhance coca leaf yield. Since 2018, Colombia’s Peace and Reconciliation Foundation records have noted 80 arrests of Mexicans tied to money laundering and drug-related offenses.

In a further revelation, data from Colombia’s Ministry of National Defense, as accessed by Infobae Mexico, provided insights into the Pacific Cartel’s operations within the nation. The Sinaloa cartel, Colombian officials noted, dispatches representatives to the Colombian Caribbean coast to foster ties with other drug trafficking entities. These dealings also involve the use of Go Fast speedboats for narcotics transportation.