Another suspect in the 2010 murder of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry has been arrested in Mexico, Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly said in a statement Thursday.
Cartel member Heraclio Osorio-Arellanes, 38, was arrested Wednesday in Mexico by authorities there, with help from Customs and Border Patrol, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the DEA and US Marshals, the DHS statement said.
The arrest came as part of a joint operation with US and Mexican authorities at a ranch on the border of the Mexican states of Sinaloa and Chihuahua, two federal law enforcement sources told CNN.
US authorities are working with Mexican officials now to have the suspect extradited to the United States, the sources said.
“Terry was killed in a gunfight between U.S. Border Patrol agents and members of a cartel ‘rip crew’ that regularly patrolled the desert along the U.S.-Mexico border looking for drug dealers to rob,” Kelly said. “Four members of the ‘rip crew’ have already been sentenced to jail time in the U.S. The last remaining member of the ‘rip crew’ is believed to still be at large.”
Manuel Osorio-Arellanes was one other member of the crew. He pleaded guilty in 2012 to first-degree murder in the case and was sentenced in 2014 to 30 years in prison.
Manuel Osorio-Arellanes was the first conviction in a case with a connection to the “Fast and Furious” operation the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives, which began in 2009 with the purpose of tracking around 2,000 weapons intended for drug cartels.
He admitted that on the night of December 14, 2010, he and four others were looking for drug traffickers to rob of marijuana.
The group encountered Terry and other Border Patrol agents along Arizona’s border with Mexico, and a gun battle broke out.
In his plea agreement, Osorio-Arellanes agreed the shot that killed Terry was fired by a member of his group, although he did not claim to have personally fired the shot or blame someone else specifically for the crime.
The Terry case has been controversial because two rifles from the “Fast and Furious” operation were found at the scene of his death. But US officials have not produced evidence proving that Terry was killed with either of those guns.