Office of the United States Attorney, John S. Leonardo
District of Arizona
December 21, 2012
DRUG TRAFFICKER SENTENCED TO 24 YEARS IN FEDERAL PRISON
PHOENIX - On December 19, 2012, U.S. District Judge Frederick J. Martone sentenced Francisco Alfredo Montes-Vargas, of Culiacan, Mexico, to 292 months in federal prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release. A federal jury previously found Montes-Vargas guilty of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and cocaine and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and cocaine.
The evidence presented at trial showed that Drug Enforcement Administration agents initiated a wiretap investigation of Montes-Vargas and his co-conspirators in November of 2009. Based on intercepted calls, agents learned that on December 11, 2009, Montes-Vargas and his co-conspirators arranged for the delivery of drugs to a house in Phoenix. Agents obtained a search warrant for the home and found two loaded semi-automatic handguns, one loaded semi-automatic rifle, 19 kilograms of cocaine, 11 kilograms of methamphetamine, and approximately $162,000 in U.S. currency. Additional intercepted calls on January 28, 2010, allowed agents to identify a car that was headed for Montes-Vargas and have that car stopped at a Border Patrol checkpoint on Interstate 8. That car contained another 9 kilograms of methamphetamine concealed in a hidden compartment.
The investigation in this case was conducted by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration in Phoenix and in Yuma, and by the United States Border Patrol. The prosecution was conducted by Assistant U.S. Attorney James B. Morse Jr., and Assistant Chief Counsel, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Ian Simons, District of Arizona, Phoenix.
CASE NUMBER: CR-2010-00708-PHX-FJM
RELEASE NUMBER: 2012-236(Montes-Vargas)
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For more information on the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of Arizona, visit http://www.justice.gov/usao/az