Honduran cartel figure testifies he bribed ex-president Lobo

FILE - In this Aug. 20, 2019 file photo, former Honduran President Porfirio Lobo speaks to the press outside court where his wife, former first lady R

FILE - In this Aug. 20, 2019 file photo, former Honduran President Porfirio Lobo speaks to the press outside court where his wife, former first lady R

This image provided by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District shows Amilcar Alexander Ardon. Ardon, a Honduran former drug trafficker an

This image provided by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District shows Amilcar Alexander Ardon. Ardon, a Honduran former drug trafficker an

This image provided by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District shows an alleged kilo of cocaine that Tony Hernandez allegedly produced an

This image provided by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District shows an alleged kilo of cocaine that Tony Hernandez allegedly produced an

NEW YORK (AP) — The former boss of Honduras' Los Cachiros cartel says he paid hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes in 2009 to then-President Porfirio Lobo in exchange for protection from extradition to the United States.

Devis Leonel Rivera Maradiaga testified Friday in a Manhattan court that the sum was between $500,000 and $600,000 and that Lobo also helped him launder the proceeds from drug trafficking.

Lobo said last week that he did not receive any illicit money from anyone and called accusations against him "falsehoods from criminals who are trying to reduce their sentence in the USA."

Rivera's testimony came on the seventh day of the drug trial against Tony Hernández, brother of current Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernández.

The former trafficker also acknowledged being responsible for 78 murders.