A former Southampton midfielder has been accused of trafficking £21 million (N8.1 billion) worth of cocaine from Colombia to the United States.
Jhon Viafara has been extradited to the United States, where he is expected to face drug-smuggling charges. Prosecutors in Texas said the former Portsmouth and Real Sociedad midfielder is working with members of the Gulf Cartel to do the illicit business.
The cocaine, about two tonnes, were transported via speedboats to the US.
Prosecutors have been investigating the former Premier League player for three years.
Viafara, 41, was arrested last year on a US drug warrant. However, the ex-midfielder, whose alias is ‘El Futbolista’, told reporters before boarding the plane to the States of his time behind bars.
He said: ”I used to share a changing room with Messi, but now I’m having to share a room with somebody who has been at war in our country.”
The former Colombia international played for 10 clubs during his career and is known for his stints on the south coast of England where he featured under Alain Perrin at St Mary’s.
In 2004, he helped Colombian team Once Caldas win the Libertadores Cup, South America’s top club competition.
He also played for several Colombian club teams and the national team, as well as LaLiga side Real Sociedad, before retiring in 2015.