Mexico arrests suspected associate of drug boss 'El Mayo' Zambada

PUBLISHED: 16:40 EST, 7 July 2016 | UPDATED: 16:40 EST, 7 July 2016

MEXICO CITY, July 7 (Reuters) - One of the top suspected associates of Mexican drug kingpin Ismael "El Mayo" Zambada has been arrested in Mexico City, prosecutors said on Thursday, in a new blow to the infamous Sinaloa drug cartel.

Heriberto Zazueta, alias "El Capi Beto," was detained on Wednesday by federal agents in coordination with Interpol. There was a warrant for his arrest in Mexico and an order for his extradition to the United States.

Zazueta moved large quantities of cocaine into the United States for years, according to U.S. authorities. In Mexico, Zazueta is alleged to be involved in money laundering, Mexican prosecutors said in a statement.

He will be held in a Mexican federal prison, they added, without specifying whether he would be extradited.

Zambada is believed to be the de facto head of the Sinaloa cartel, since its previous boss, Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, was recaptured earlier this year.

More than 100,000 people have died in drug violence in Mexico since 2007.

The Sinaloa cartel has fought bloody turf wars with rival gangs in Mexico.