Sinaloa cartel enforcer appears in San Diego court

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Updated: 7/11 6:09 pm

SAN DIEGO (AP) — A suspected top enforcer for Mexico's Sinaloa drug cartel has pleaded not guilty to conspiracy charges in California.

Jose Rodrigo Arechiga Gamboa — who uses the nickname "Chino Antrax" — declined to seek bail Friday at a brief hearing held under heavy security in San Diego. He remains in federal custody.

He was extradited from the Netherlands a day earlier.

The 34-year-old was arrested in Amsterdam's airport in December after taking a flight from Mexico City.

Federal prosecutors say he was traveling with the passport of a dead Mexican man, had undergone plastic surgery and had tried to alter his fingerprints.

Less than two months later, Sinaloa cartel leader Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman was arrested in the Mexican port city of Mazatlan.

©2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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