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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ANGELA DODGE

May 16, 2013

PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICER
(713) 567-9388

Drug Smuggler Sentenced to More than 10 Years for Hitting Border Patrol Unit with Load Vehicle

McALLEN, Texas – Jorge Eduardo Lopez, 21, of Rio Grande City, has been sentenced to 135 months imprisonment following a conviction for possession with intent to distribute marijuana, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today.

Lopez pleaded guilty on Jan. 1, 2013, admitting he transported 296 kilograms of marijuana north from the Rio Grande River near La Grulla. As he drove the load vehicle north, Border Patrol agents in marked units attempted to stop him. He traveled at a high rate of speed trying to evade arrest. Eventually, he crashed into one Border Patrol unit, damaging the vehicle and endangering the agent inside.

Today, U.S. District Judge Micaela Alvarez sentenced Lopez to the 135-month term which will be immediately followed by four years of supervised release. Judge Alvarez also ordered that Lopez pay more than $26,000 in restitution for the damaged vehicle and agent’s hospital bill.

Lopez has been in custody where he will remain pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

This case was investigated by Border Patrol, FBI and the Drug Enforcement Administration. Assistant United States Attorney Kristen Rees prosecuted the case.