News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 18, 2009
Contact: Thomas E. Murphy
Number: (314)538-4660

Two Mexican Nationals Sentenced For Large-Scale Cocaine Conspiracy Government Alleges $10 Million Worth Of Cocaine Smuggled From Mexico

NOV 18 -- (Kansas City, MO) – Matt J. Whitworth, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that two Mexican nationals were sentenced in federal court today for their roles in a large-scale conspiracy to distribute cocaine. The government believes more than $10 million worth of cocaine was smuggled from Mexico for distribution in the Kansas City metropolitan area.

Felipe Garcia-Lopez, also known as Eduardo Zazueta, 29, and Humberto Saucedo-Lobatos, 28, both citizens of Mexico residing in Kansas City, Mo., were sentenced by U.S. Chief District Judge Fernando J. Gaitan this morning. Garcia-Lopez was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison without parole. Saucedo-Lobatos was sentenced to nine years in federal prison without parole. The court also ordered Garcia-Lopez and Saucedo-Lobatos to forfeit to the government $151,430 that was seized by law enforcement officers.

On March 17, 2009, Garcia-Lopez and Saucedo-Lobatos each pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine.

On Oct. 7, 2008, Drug Enforcement Administration agents followed a 2004 Toyota minivan from a Kansas City, Kan., hotel to a Kansas City, Mo., residence. They contacted Saucedo-Lobatos at the residence and received his consent to search the residence. During the search, they found Garcia-Lopez hiding under the minivan, which was parked in the garage, and Garcia-Lopez and Saucedo-Lobatos were arrested. Early the next morning, officers executed a search warrant at the residence and discovered 46 bundles of powder cocaine, which were contained in various other bags (such as a suitcase and duffel bag), in a bedroom closet. They also found a high-power semi-automatic handgun, 14 duct-taped bundles of cash totaling $151,430, an electronic money counter, and documents that appeared to be drug notes and accounting computations in excess of $10 million.

The total amount of cocaine seized from a hidden compartment in the minivan and from the residence was 86.15 kilograms. The government believes the drug ledger recovered from the residence records drug dealing in excess of 150 kilograms of cocaine.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph M. Marquez. It was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration.