Mexico detains drug capo wanted in US

Police stand guard at a checkpoint on the road connecting Toluca with Mexico City on July 14, 2015 (AFP Photo/Alfredo Estrella)

Mexico City (AFP) - Mexican authorities arrested on Wednesday a drug capo wanted by the United States on cocaine trafficking allegations, prosecutors said.

Jesus Areli Navarrete Castelan was detained in the central city of Toluca, 65 kilometers (40 miles) west of Mexico City, under an arrest warrant for extradition, the attorney general's office said in a statement.

Navarrete is a leader of a drug cartel who hired people to ship cocaine to the United States in secret compartments hidden inside vehicles, the statement said.

He is wanted by a court in the US southern state of Tennessee on drug trafficking charges.

Local media said Navarrete, alias "El Papayo," was a member of Los Rojos drug cartel, which operates in the states of Guerrero and Morelos.

Los Rojos are the main rivals of the Guerreros Unidos drug gang, which Mexican prosecutors have accused of killing 43 college students in Guerrero and incinerating their bodies last year.

Mexico extradited 13 drug honchos to the United States on September 30, in a shift by President Enrique Pena Nieto's administration, which had slowed the pace of extraditions after he took office in December 2012.