Two Laredo Residents Convicted of Trafficking Methamphetamine
|July 22, 2011|
LAREDO, Texas - After two days of trial and approximately two hours of deliberation, a federal jury has found Israel Perez-Solis, a legal resident of the United States living in Laredo, Texas, guilty of conspiring to possess and possessing with intent to distribute more than 50 grams of methamphetamine, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today. The jury returned its verdict this afternoon.
Perez-Solis, 32, now faces no less than 10 years and up to life imprisonment on each of the two counts of conviction. United States District Judge Diana Saldana, who presided over the trial, has set sentencing for Oct. 25, 2011, and ordered Perez-Solis to remain in federal custody without bond pending that proceeding.
During trial, the jury heard testimony from Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agents who described the events of May 20 and May 23, 2011, during which the DEA orchestrated a controlled undercover buy of 1.96 kilograms of 97% pure methamphetamine from Perez-Solis’ co-defendant, Rene Ramiro Martinez, for $13,000 per pound. Agents had received information that Martinez was a local Laredo source of supply of methamphetamine. According to testimony, on May 23, 2011, Martinez met with the undercover agent to make the exchange near a local hotel. Martinez did not have the methamphetamine with him, but instead called Perez-Solis, who was waiting in the vicinity of the hotel. Perez-Solis arrived in his white van moments later. The undercover agent asked Perez-Solis if he had "it" and Perez-Solis acknowledged that he did in a cooler in the back of the white van. Perez-Solis then helped remove the inner lining of the cooler and the four bundles of methamphetamine were inside the inner lining. The bundles were later determined to have a gross weight of 1.96 kilograms. Both men were arrested and subsequently charged.
Martinez, of Laredo, pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute more than 50 grams of methamphetamine on July 11, 2011. He too faces no less than 10 years up to a maximum of life imprisonment at his sentencing set for Oct. 12, 2011. Martinez has been permitted to remain on bond pending sentencing.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Don J. Young and Special Assistant David White prosecuted the case.