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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Colorado

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Thornton Man To Spend Over 11 Years in Federal Prison for Cocaine Trafficking

Defendant Carlos Fernandez-Barron last of 7 defendants sentenced for the illegal drug trafficking

DENVER – Thornton resident Carlos Fernandez-Barron, age 38, has been sentenced to serve 135 months (11 years and 3 months) in federal prison for cocaine trafficking, U.S. Attorney Bob Troyer and DEA Denver Division Special Agent in Charge William “Tim” McDermott announced.  The sentence was handed down by U.S. District Court Judge Raymond P. Moore on June 8, 2018.  After serving his prison sentence, Fernandez-Barron will serve an additional 5 years on supervised release.  The defendant appeared at the sentencing hearing in custody, and was remanded at its conclusion. 

The defendant and seven others were indicted by a federal grand jury in Denver on September 3, 2015.  A superseding indictment was obtained on May 2, 2016.  Of the seven individuals indicted, five pled guilty and were sentenced for their crimes, and two defendants – including Fernandez-Barron -- went to trial and were found guilty.  In total, all seven defendants were sentenced to over 550 months combined for their cocaine trafficking. 

At trial, the government introduced evidence showing that Fernandez-Barron was a Denver-based member of a sophisticated cocaine trafficking conspiracy, which was responsible for sending hundreds of kilograms of cocaine to Colorado and millions of dollars in proceeds back to Chihuahua, Mexico.  The defendant helped unload cocaine from hidden compartments in vehicles, distribute it in the Denver metro area, and then collect proceeds to return to Mexico.   On March 19, 2018, a Denver jury convicted Fernandez-Baron of conspiring with others to distribute and possess with the intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine.  The jury also convicted Fernandez-Baron of personally distributing or possessing with the intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine.

“Colorado law enforcement partnerships are the national gold standard,” said U.S. Attorney Bob Troyer.  “Thanks to them, it remains a foolish decision for drug trafficking organizations to set up shop here.”

“This case is a great representation of how the DEA and our law enforcement partners target major drug trafficking organizations responsible for the importation and distribution of hundreds of kilograms of cocaine into our community,” said DEA Denver Division Special Agent in Charge McDermott.  “This case was successful due to partnerships between the DEA and the Task Force Officers of the multiple law enforcement agencies that make up the Front Range Task Force; including the Denver Police Department, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, Colorado Bureau of Investigation, Aurora Police Department, Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office, 18th Judicial District, Mountain View Police Department, and Homeland Security Investigations (ICE).”

In addition to Fernandez-Barron, Lucio Ivan Lozano was sentenced to 180 months (15 years) in prison; Edgar Rene Mier-Garces was sentenced to 178 months (nearly 15 years) in prison; Keneth Molina-Villalobos was sentenced to serve 120 months (10 years) in prison; Jose Lara-Gallegos was sentenced to 84 months (7 years) in prison; Jose Delores Licon-Gallegos was sentenced to serve time served; and Martha Patricia Mota was sentenced to serve 15 months (1.25 years).

This case was investigated by the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area’s Front Range Task Force, which includes agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration, Denver Field Division, with assistance from the other law enforcement agencies listed above.  Assistant United States Attorney Peter McNeilly and Special Assistant United States Attorney Wayne Paugh prosecuted this matter for the United States. 

Drug Trafficking
Press Release Number: 
CASE NUMBER: 15-cr-00360
Updated June 13, 2018