DOJ SealDepartment of Justice

United States Attorney John L. Ratcliffe
Eastern District of Texas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                          CONTACT:  DAVILYN WALSTON
THURSDAY, MARCH 27, 2008                      PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER
WWW.USDOJ.GOV/USAO/txe                                        PHONE: (409) 839-2538
                                                                                                 CELL: (409) 553-9881
                                                                                                    

THREE GUILTY OF COCAINE VIOLATIONS IN EAST TEXAS

(TYLER, TX) United States Attorney John L. Ratcliffe announced today that three men have pleaded guilty to federal drug charges in the Eastern District of Texas. 

            CESAR LUIS ALVAREZ, 34, of Dallas, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than 5 kilograms of cocaine.  Alvarez faces up to life in federal prison and a $2 million fine at sentencing.  Alvarez has also agreed to forfeit all interest in property seized and agreed to a forfeiture judgment of $100,000.  A sentencing hearing has not been set.

            FABIAN ARTHUR GONZALES, JR., 29, Dallas, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than 5 kilograms of cocaine.  Gonzales faces up to life in prison and a fine of up to $2 million.  Gonzales also agreed to forfeit all interest in property seized and agreed to a forfeiture judgment of $100,000.  A sentencing date has not been set.

            SALVADOR ALVAREZ, a/k/a CARLOS NEVAREZ, JR., age unknown, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than 5 kilograms of cocaine.  Alvarez faces up to life in prison and a $2 million fine at sentencing.  Alvarez also agreed to forfeit all interest in property seized and agreed to a forfeiture judgment of $100,000.  Additionally, Alvarez also pleaded guilty to being an alien found unlawfully present in the United States after deportation.  Alvarez faces up to 20 years in federal prison and a fine of up to $250,000 on this charge.  A sentencing date has not been set.

            According to information presented in court, on February 1, 2008, a Smith County Sheriff's deputy conducted a traffic stop on Hwy 271 during which 8 kilograms of cocaine was discovered concealed in built-in compartments of the vehicle.  A follow up investigation was conducted resulting in the seizure of an additional 14 kilograms of cocaine, another car outfitted with hidden compartments, approximately $16,000 in cash, firearms and the arrests of 5 others in Dallas.  It was also determined that Salvador Alvarez had provided the false identity of Carlos Nevarez, Jr. and that, in fact, Salvador Alvarez had been previously deported to Mexico on two occasions under his true name.  A federal grand jury returned an indictment on February 5, 2008 charging the men with federal drug trafficking crimes.
   
            This case is being investigated by Smith County Sheriff's Office, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).  This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney William Baldwin.
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