By BBC News

A former Mexican security minister has been arrested in the US, charged with taking bribes from a drugs cartel.

Genaro García Luna is accused of allowing the Sinaloa cartel of "El Chapo" Guzman to operate in Mexico in exchange for millions of dollars.

Prosecutors say Mr García Luna gave the cartel safe passage for drug shipments and access to sensitive information.

They say that on two occasions cartel members delivered up to $5m (£3.7m) in two briefcases to him in person.

He has previously denied any wrongdoing.

Mr García Luna, 52, served as public security chief in the administration of President Felipe Calderon between 2006 and 2012.

His arrest in Texas is a major development in Mexican politics, the BBC's Mexico correspondent Will Grant reports.

Mr García Luna was not just an important figure in Mr Calderon's administration - he was Mexico's secretary of public security, the face of the country's federal police force, our correspondent adds.

Mr Calderon, with US backing, deployed troops against the cartels for the first time. Tens of thousands died in Mexico in drug-related violence during his "war on drugs".