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Francisco Hiraldo, Former Dominican Drug Chief, Extradited To U.S. To Face Drug Trafficking Charges

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SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic — A former director of the Dominican Republic's National Drug Control Agency has been extradited to the U.S. to face drug trafficking charges.

Francisco Hiraldo is expected to be tried in federal court in New York. Authorities accuse the 55-year-old retired Navy officer of protecting drug traffickers for at least nine years, and of allowing 25 drug cargos to pass through in return for $100,000 per cargo.

Authorities also accuse him of receiving 700 kilograms (1,500 pounds) of cocaine as payment in 2008.

Hiraldo has said he is innocent and agreed to be extradited.

Agency spokesman Roberto Lebron said Saturday that Hiraldo was turned over Friday to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

Some 300 agency workers have been accused of drug trafficking in the last three years.

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