News Hitman Charged With Totoaba Smuggling



‘Hitman’ charged with totoaba smuggling
12th December 2018

By Sandra Pearce

Mexico has arrested an alleged drug cartel hitman on charges of trafficking the critically endangered totoaba fish, a species whose swimbladder can fetch up to $20,000 on the black market in China.

The suspect, identified as Oscar N, alias ‘El Parra’, was arrested on charges of leading a top totoaba trafficking gang, said the government of the northern state of Baja California. He is described as a ‘dangerous hitman and drug trafficker’ and wanted on a homicide charge.

The state sits on the Gulf of California, the native habitat for the totoaba.

The illegal fishing trade has turned increasingly violent, and has claimed a collateral victim: the nearly extinct vaquita marina, the world’s smallest porpoise, which can end up caught in the nets used to fish for totoaba, reports Reuters news agency.