United States Attorney Anne M. Tompkins
Western District of North Carolina
Five Co-Conspirators Have Also Been Sentenced In Connection with the Investigation
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – U.S. District Court Judge Richard L. Voorhees sentenced Herculano Albarran-Martinez today to serve 20 years in prison for trafficking cocaine, announced Anne M. Tompkins, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina.
U.S. Attorney Tompkins is joined in making today’s announcement by Brock D. Nicholson, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in Atlanta and the Carolinas; Paula Carson, Special Agent in Charge of the Northwestern District Office of the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation (NC SBI); Sheriff Phillip H. Redmond of the Iredell County Sheriff’s Office; Chief Tom Anderson of the Statesville Police Department; Sheriff A.C. Stokes, of the Davie County Sheriff’s Office; and Chief Marty Sumner of the High Point Police Department.
In February 2010, a federal bill of indictment charged Albarran-Martinez, also known as “El Nene,” 43, of Mexico, with conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute at least five kilograms of cocaine. Albarran-Martinez pleaded guilty in October 2010, to conspiracy with intent to distribute 15-50 kilograms of cocaine, and was sentenced to 240 months of imprisonment to be followed by five years of supervised release.
According to filed documents and statements made in court, Albarran-Martinez and his co-conspirators engaged in a drug trafficking conspiracy in the Statesville area. Case evidence included telephone calls among the co-conspirators planning and executing dozens of cocaine transactions, many of which were made to undercover law enforcement officials. In addition, in August 2009, while law enforcement agents executed a search warrant, they seized more than 11 kilograms of cocaine and firearms, including a MAC-10, from a stash house in High Point, N.C.
The indictment charged five additional defendants with the same drug trafficking charge. All five defendants pled guilty to the charge and were sentenced as follows:
Juan Aguirre Solis, 52, of Mexico, was sentenced in December 2011, to 151 months of imprisonment to be followed by five years of supervised release.
Jovo Vargas Nunez, 23, of Mexico, was sentenced in January 2012, to 132 months of imprisonment to be followed by five years of supervised release.
Jilberto Bautista Villegas, also known as “Laurentoni Baza Martinez,” 32, of Mexico, was sentenced in October 2011, to 120 months of imprisonment to be followed by five years of supervised release.
Isidro Jesus Soto Santander, 25, of Mexico, was sentenced in December 2011, to 70 months of imprisonment to be followed by five years of supervised release.
Cirilio Humberto Ortega Jiminez, also known as “Jose Miguel Cintron,” 25, of Statesville, was sentenced in April 2011, to 60 months of imprisonment to be followed by four years of supervised release.
All defendants are in federal custody. Federal sentences are served without the possibility of parole.
The investigation was spearheaded by HSI and SBI, with the assistance of the Iredell County Sheriff’s Office, the Statesville Police Department, the Davie County Sheriff’s Office, and the High Point Police Department. The prosecution was handled for the government by Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven R. Kaufman, of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Charlotte.
United States v. Albarran-Martinez et al; Case Number 5:10-cr-5-RLV