The son of one of the world's most wanted drug lords has pleaded not guilty to drug trafficking charges in San Diego.

Serafin Zambada declined to seek bail during his initial court appearance in San Diego on Wednesday. A judge scheduled a pretrial hearing Jan. 3.

The 23-year-old San Diego native's father is Ismael "El Mayo" Zambada. The elder Zambada is considered the strategist of Mexico's Sinaloa cartel, more involved in daily operations than his better-known boss, Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán.

The younger Zambada was arrested last week while crossing the border in Nogales, Ariz., with his wife, who was detained but later released. Prosecutors asked that he be moved to San Diego to face charges of conspiracy to import methamphetamine and cocaine, and criminal forfeiture.

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