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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Florida

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, June 24, 2016

Mexican National Sentenced To More Than 15 Years On Money Laundering And Drug Trafficking Charges

Tampa, Florida – United States District Judge Elizabeth A. Kovachevich today sentenced Edgar Yanez-Gutierrez (32, Nayarit, Mexico) to 15 years and 8 months in federal prison for conspiring to commit money laundering and conspiring to distribute cocaine, methamphetamine, and marijuana. He pleaded guilty on February 24, 2016.

According to the court documents, Yanez-Gutierrez was part of a large-scale drug trafficking organization (DTO) that shipped cocaine, methamphetamine, and marijuana from California to drug distribution and money laundering cells throughout the United States, including Florida, Ohio, North Carolina, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Alabama, and Arkansas. Yanez-Gutierrez fled from California to Mexico in 2011, but was later arrested and extradited to the United States in December 2015. To date, 27 others have been prosecuted in the Middle District of Florida for their roles in this DTO.

“This sentencing is another step toward the total dismantling of a dangerous transnational drug trafficking operation, further emphasizing that criminals cannot hide behind international borders and escape justice.” said Susan L. McCormick, special agent in charge of HSI Tampa. “HSI will continue to work with our international law enforcement partners to make our country and communities safer.”

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Christopher F. Murray. It was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, with assistance from other federal, state, and local agencies as part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation. The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt, and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking and money laundering organizations, and those primarily responsible for the nation’s drug supply. The Office of International Affairs, Department of Justice, assisted with Yanez-Gutierrez’s extradition to the United States. 

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Component(s): 
Updated June 24, 2016