Where is Ex-AFI Officer Luis Cardenas Palomino Now?

With ‘A Kidnapping Scandal: The Florence Cassez Affair’ living up to its title in every way imaginable, we get a complete insight into one of the most controversial cases in Mexican legal history. After all, this Netflix original charts not only Florence’s and her then-boyfriend Israel Vallarta’s alleged involvement in a brutal abduction ring but also the presence of corruption in every aspect. So now, if you wish to learn more about former public officer Luis Cárdenas Palomino — with a specific focus on his past experiences as well as current standing — we’ve got the details for you.

Who is Luis Cárdenas Palomino?

Luis Cárdenas Palomino is a Mexican native through and through, which is why he seemingly decided to follow in his father’s footsteps of serving their homeland when he was just 20 years old. He was able to get a job at the CISEN agency, the Center for Research and National Security in 1989. Over time, he rose up the ranks and became a well-respected member of the staff. He was actually named head of National Drug Control Center in just four years. This was followed quickly by the Kidnapping Group, Specialized Unit for Organized Crime’s 1996.

Luis then became a part of the Federal Judicial Police around 2000, where he reportedly played a significant role in the force’s evolution into the Agency of Federal Investigations (or simply AFI). It’s also the place the General Director of Inquiries supposedly came across Lead Director Genaro García Luna, just to soon grow into his undeniable right-hand man in every sense of the term. Luis was hence active on site while the staged raid to “capture” Florence and Israel on December 9, 2005, was carried out, affecting the public perception of him once the truth later came to light.

Where is Luis Cardenas Palomino Right Now?

The AFI officer managed to get the position of General Director of Private Security at Federal Public Security Secretariat due to his connections and performance. As if that’s not enough, the continued close collaborator of then-Public Security Secretary Genaro was promoted to Intelligence Coordinator for Crime Prevention of the Federal Police in 2008. Only then did Luis begin serving as Head of Federal Police’s Regional Security Division (in early 2010) to tackle drugs, organized crime, and weapon assaults — a title he maintained for years.

pan el universal yt
Image Credit: El Universal/YouTube

The former public official was arrested in Naucalpan (Mexico) on July 5, 2021. This was after a joint operation that involved five agencies to comply with a September 2020 warrant against them. That’s because he has been accused of commissioning the brutal torture of at least four individuals allegedly tied to the Los Zodiaco kidnapping gang back in the early-to-mid 2010s. They are; Sergio Cortés Vallarta, Eduardo Estrada Granados, Ricardo Estrada Granados, and Mario Vallarta Cisneros (the purported leader of the criminal group Israel’s brother).

Although Luis has not been charged with the charges, the Sixth Unitary Criminal Court of the First Circuit confirmed his detention on June 29, 2022. The Federal Social Re-adaptation and Correction Center No. 53-year-old Luis is currently behind bars awaiting legal proceedings. 1 (or the Altiplano prison) in Almoloya de Juárez. Furthermore, like Genaro García Luna, the US federal services have also accused Luis of accepting bribes amounting to millions from the Sinaloa cartel when he was in power. Yet it’s unclear whether he’ll be extradited for it or not.

Continue reading: Where is Florence Cassez now?

Leave a Comment