The arrest stokes worries from the USA and global analysts that the FARC and other guerrilla groups putting down their weapons will not be able to quit overseeing the illicit, underground industries involving drugs, timber, and gold in Colombia.
Seuxis Hernandez, also known by the alias Jesus Santrich, was taken into custody at his residence in the capital, Bogota, on an arrest warrant issued by the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of NY charging him with conspiracy to smuggle $15 million worth of cocaine into the U.S., according to an Interpol notice quoted by The Associated Press.
Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said in a televised address that his "hand wouldn't shake at the authorisation of his extradition" if irrefutable proof for the allegations exists, in order to protect the integrity of the peace deal signed in November 2016.
Under a peace deal seeking to end Colombia's half-century conflict, FARC members who lay down their weapons and confess their war crimes are to be spared jail time and extradition.
The son of two school teachers, Santrich joined a local youth communist group as a student and entered the guerrilla movement in his early 20s.
In addition, it triggered an exchange of mad recriminations amongst conservative critics of their peace procedure and supporters of all the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia.
Hernandez and his co-conspirators allegedly told the buyers that they had access to laboratories to supply the cocaine, to US-registered aircrafts to move the drugs and provided evidence of access to large quantities of cocaine.
At a press conference in this capital, the National Political Council of the Revolutionary Alternative Force of the Common (FARC) denounced that the detention of Santrich is part of a plan orchestrated by the United States government with the assistance of the Colombian Prosecutor's Office.
"Those detained have betrayed the values and the principles of the peace deal", Martinez said.
The accord offers disarmed FARC members sanctuary to not be indicted for crimes committed before the 2016 agreement, however, those committed after are subject to a full judicial process.
The FARC long funded their insurgency by leveling a "war tax" on cocaine moving through territory the rebels dominated.
"Like addicts they just cannot quit the business", he included.
Fifty members of its leadership structure - though not Santrich - were indicted in 2006 in the US on charges of running the world's largest drug cartel.
The FARC's ties to Colombia's flourishing drug underworld have always been a sore spot for the rebels.