The brother of a Mexican drug cartel leader who allegedly ordered a 2013 murder on the Southlake Town Square has been extradited from Mexico and appeared in federal court in Fort Worth on Monday.
Ramon Villareal Hernandez, the reputed financial head of the Beltran Leyva cartel, was arrested in Mexico in May 2018. Villareal also is known as “El Mon” and “Gabino.”
According to a heavily-redacted indictment unsealed Monday, Villareal is charged with interstate stalking and conspiracy to commit murder for hire.
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He was appointed a federal public defender, George Lancaster, who did not immediately return a call for comment.
In an initial court appearance in Fort Worth, Villareal pleaded not guilty and waived a detention hearing, according to court records.
Villareal is the brother of Rodolfo Villareal Hernandez, known as "El Gato," the reputed regional head of a cartel in the Mexican state of Nuevo Leon.
The group was linked to the murder of Juan Guerrero Chapa in Southlake in May 2013.
Guerrero was gunned down execution-style as he and his wife were shopping. His wife was not injured.
Three other men were convicted in 2016 of stalking Guerrero with high-tech surveillance equipment, including a GPS device they secretly placed on his car and even remote-controlled cameras they hid near his Southlake estate. The actual gunman and getaway driver were believed to have fled to Mexico.
Guerrero also was a U.S. government informant and had been the personal lawyer for Osiel Cardenas, the one-time head of the notorious Gulf Cartel.