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Jan. 10, 2011

ONE LOAD OF 10 KILOGRAMS OF METHAMPHETAMINE LANDS BROWNVILLE MAN IN PRISON FOR MORE THAN 24  YEARS

(CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas) – A Brownsville man has been sentenced to 292 months in federal prison without parole, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today.

Joe Cruz III, 24, of Brownsville, Texas, was found guilty by a jury on Nov. 9, 2010, of possession with intent to distribute approximately 10 kilograms of methamphetamine. Today, United States District Judge Janis Graham Jack sentenced him to more than 24 years in prison to be followed by a five-year-term of supervised release.

The charge stems from an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the United States Border Patrol. In June 2010, Cruz arrived at the Falfurrias checkpoint driving a Pontiac Grand Am bound for Dallas. A routine K-9 exam resulted in an alert prompting BP agents to refer Cruz and his vehicle to secondary for further inspection. That inspection resulted in the discovery of nine bundles in the rear speaker deck of the vehicle which tested positive for methamphetamine. Through further investigation, agents determined Cruz had transported the methamphetamine from Mexico into the United States through the Gateway Bridge in Brownsville a few hours earlier. A laboratory analysis of the methamphetamine showed a purity level of 99.9%. 

In federal custody since his arrest, Cruz will remain in custody and serve his sentence at a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be designated in the near future.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Lance Watt.

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