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Press Release

Mexican National and Co-Conspirator Sentenced to Prison for Attempting to Transport Drugs from California to Alaska

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Alaska

Anchorage, Alaska – U.S. Attorney Bryan Schroder announced that two men have been sentenced in Juneau for attempting to transport cocaine and marijuana from California to Alaska for distribution.

Jorge Lopez-Villareal, 29, a citizen of Mexico residing in Juneau, was sentenced yesterday by Chief U.S. District Judge Timothy M. Burgess, to serve three years in prison, followed by four years of supervised release.  His co-conspirator, Carlos Zavala-Flores, 39, of Juneau, was previously sentenced in June 2018 to serve three years in prison, followed by five years of supervised release.  Both have pleaded guilty to drug conspiracy charges.

According to court documents, on April 19, 2017, Zavala-Flores and Lopez-Villareal flew together from Juneau to Los Angeles.  On April 26, 2017, the two were traveling up the I-5 in a vehicle, which contained quantities of cocaine and marijuana intended for distribution in Alaska.  Later that day, Oregon State Police conducted a traffic stop on the vehicle after observing the vehicle crossing over the centerline several times.  At the traffic stop, the Trooper noticed a strong odor of fabric softener and marijuana emanating from the vehicle.  When Zavala-Flores was questioned, the Trooper learned that both Zavala-Flores and Lopez-Villareal intended on driving the vehicle up the I-5 to Seattle so they could ship the vehicle to Juneau.  Upon arriving in Seattle, the two were planning to split the cost to barge the vehicle to Juneau, and both later intended to fly up to Juneau from Washington via a commercial airline. 

A subsequent search of the vehicle revealed approximately 6.8 pounds of cocaine and 22 pounds of marijuana intended for distribution in Juneau.  A search of Lopez-Villareal revealed he was carrying $6,750 in U.S. currency.     

Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and Oregon State Police (OSP) conducted the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of this case.  This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jack S. Schmidt.

Updated September 21, 2018

Drug Trafficking