Bogota: Former Colombia international footballer, midfielder Jhon Viafara is facing extradition to the United States after being arrested on suspicion of drug trafficking, Colombian officials said, here Wednesday.
The 40-year-old has been accused of forming part of a criminal network that shipped cocaine to Central America and onward to the US via the Pacific Ocean authorities informed. He and four others were arrested Tuesday near the southwestern Colombian city of Cali after being involved in a car accident.
According to the police, Viafara also faced charges of speeding and driving in an intoxicated state. “According to investigations conducted by the US authorities, the detainees were part of a transnational network that had links to the Clan del Golfo criminal structure,” the public prosecutor’s office said in a statement, Wednesday.
Viafara was responsible for paying boat operators and ensuring that shipments reached their destination, according to the investigators.
The police said they have confiscated 2.5 tonnes of cocaine with a street value of $28 million from the group in the past two years. Authorities in the US state of Texas have issued an extradition request for all five of the detainees.
Viafara was capped 34 times for Colombia between 2003 and 2010. He retired in 2015 after a career that included spells with Portsmouth, Southampton and Real Sociedad.