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Press Release

Tijuana Man Sentenced to Nearly 9 Years in Prison for Attempting to Buy Machine Guns, Grenades in Exchange for Fentanyl and Heroin

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

          LOS ANGELES – A former San Bernardino County resident was sentenced today to 105 months in federal prison for providing approximately 1 kilogram of fentanyl and 1 kilogram of heroin in exchange for machine guns, grenade launchers and a case of what he believed were six dozen live grenades.

          Pedro Roberto Hernandez-Gomez, 32, formerly of San Bernardino and who was a resident of Tijuana, Mexico at the time of his arrest, was sentenced by United States District Judge André Birotte Jr. Hernandez-Gomez pleaded guilty on March 12 to one count of distribution of fentanyl.

          In January 2020, Hernandez-Gomez agreed to provide narcotics in exchange for firearms to a person he believed was a drug customer, but who was in fact a source working with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). Hernandez-Gomez provided 999.25 grams of heroin and 1,001.19 grams of fentanyl to the source and an undercover ATF agent.

          In exchange for the narcotics, Hernandez-Gomez received three machine guns, two grenade launchers and one case of 72 inert grenades, which Hernandez-Gomez believed were actual grenades.

          Hernandez-Gomez possessed these firearms despite having been previously convicted of a felony offense – possession with intent to distribute heroin – in federal court in Arizona in February 2014. He was sentenced to three years in federal prison for that offense.

          “The distribution of illegal drugs poses a serious danger to the community, especially the distribution of fentanyl, a potent and powerful opioid,” prosecutors wrote in their sentencing memorandum. “Further concerning is that [Hernandez-Gomez] was providing this large quantity of drugs in exchange for dangerous firearms, that is, machine guns and grenade launchers.”

          The ATF investigated this matter.

          Assistant United States Attorney Ashley Fillmore of the General Crimes Section prosecuted this case.


Ciaran McEvoy
Public Information Officer
United States Attorney’s Office
Central District of California (Los Angeles)
(213) 894-4465

Updated October 13, 2021

Press Release Number: 21-214