A high-ranking Zetas cartel member has pleaded not guilty to drug trafficking and money laundering counts in a U.S. federal court.
Ivan Velasquez-Caballero will remain in federal custody after waiving a detention hearing during his Wednesday court appearance in Laredo.
The 43-year-old Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, man had been arrested last year in Mexico and extradited to South Texas to face the U.S. charges.
The man known in Mexico as "El Taliban" or "50" faces life in prison if convicted. He's one of 34 suspects named in an indictment that alleges kidnapping, drug and firearms conspiracies, trafficking, money laundering and conspiracy to kidnap a U.S. citizen in a foreign country. Fifteen people have been convicted.
Information from: Laredo Morning Times, http://www.lmtonline.com
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.