News and Press Releases

Las Vegas Crack Cocaine Distributor Again Convicted in Federal Court Following Remand

January 28, 2002

Las Vegas, Nev. - Daniel G. Bogden, United States Attorney for the District of Nevada, Grant Ashley, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Las Vegas, and Joseph K. Forti, Acting Chief of the North Las Vegas Police Department, announced that on January 24, 2002, Carlos Cabrera was convicted by a federal jury in Las Vegas of three counts of distribution of crack cocaine and one count of conspiracy to distribute crack cocaine. The conviction followed a two-day jury trial before U.S. District Court Judge Roger L. Hunt.

Carlos Cabrera, 55, of Las Vegas, was indicted by a federal grand jury on October 8, 1997. Cabrera was originally tried and convicted in October 1998 in a trial before U.S. District Court Judge Johnnie Rawlinson. In March 1999, Judge Rawlinson sentenced the defendant to 160 months in federal prison, but on August 24, 2000, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed the conviction and remanded the case back to the District Court in Las Vegas for a new trial, finding that the defendant had been deprived of his due process and equal protection rights because one of the law enforcement witnesses had made references to Cabrera's Cuban ethnicity. At the new trial last week, the evidence of the defendant's drug dealing proved sufficient to sustain a conviction. The evidence introduced established that Cabrera distributed crack cocaine to an undercover North Las Vegas Police Detective on three instances: the first on September 24, 1997, involving 7.92 grams; the second on September 25, 1997, involving 30.2 grams; and the third, on September 27, 1997, involving 115.22 grams. All three drug transactions were recorded on audio tape. Cabrera was arrested by FBI agents in Las Vegas on September 30, 1997, and has been in custody since that time. A co-defendant, Iran Mulgado, was also convicted at the first trial, but pled guilty prior to the second trial.

The maximum statutory penalty for the conspiracy count and the distribution count involving 115 grams of crack cocaine is 10 years minimum to life imprisonment, a fine of $4,000,000, and five years of supervised release; the maximum statutory penalty for the other two distribution counts is five years minimum to forty years imprisonment, a $2,000,000 fine, and five years of supervised release. The actual sentence will be dictated by the United States Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of factors, and will be imposed in the discretion of the Court. The sentencing of Mr. Cabrera is scheduled for May 3, 2002, before Judge Hunt in Las Vegas.

The prosecution and conviction of Mr. Cabrera is the result of an investigation by agents of the FBI and detectives of the North Las Vegas Police Department. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Matt Parrella and Karyn Kenny.

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