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28 May 2010 - Media release

INTERPOL links lead to Colombian beauty queen arrest in Argentina

Angie Sanclemente Valencia was wanted on INTERPOL Red Notice for drugs charges

LYON, France –  The arrest by Argentinean police of a Colombian woman wanted for allegedly leading a drug trafficking ring has been praised by the world police body after the suspect was located through international police efforts and intelligence provided by INTERPOL’s Fugitive Unit.

Former model Angie Sanclemente Valencia, aged 31, is suspected of recruiting young women to smuggle cocaine from Argentina to Europe via Mexico. INTERPOL issued a Red Notice or internationally-wanted persons against her in March at the request of its National Central Bureau (NCB) in Buenos Aires.

Her arrest came about after INTERPOL’s Fugitive Investigative Support (FIS) unit at its General Secretariat headquarters in Lyon provided NCB Buenos Aires with detailed information about the fugitive’s possible whereabouts it had gathered from intelligence.

Close liaison with the Fugitive Unit in NCB Buenos Aires then ensured the immediate transfer of the information to the relevant law enforcement officers operating on the ground. The investigation subsequently confirmed the accuracy of the information provided by FIS.

Following the issue of the Red Notice, INTERPOL’s FIS Unit and its Command and Co-ordination Centre had been liaising closely with INTERPOL’s National Central Bureaus in Buenos Aires, Bogota and Mexico City and circulated information such as pictures to assist in the fugitive’s identification and location.

Hailing the operation as ‘a credit to law enforcement officers in Argentina’, INTERPOL Secretary General Ronald K. Noble said: “This case has proven to be a perfect model of international police co-operation in combining action by our National Central Bureaus on the ground and the ability to instantly share and communicate information on wanted persons by our Fugitive Unit at our Lyon headquarters.”

“This arrest once again demonstrates the power and effectiveness of international co-operation between police worldwide in obtaining credible and actionable information in relation to the identification, location and apprehension of fugitives around the world,” added Mr Noble.

Sanclemente Valencia’s arrest was carried out by the Buenos Aires Airport Police (Policía de Seguridad Aeroportuaria), in collaboration with INTERPOL NCB Buenos Aires.