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Press Release

California Woman to Federal Prison for Iowa Meth Conviction

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Iowa
Transported ¼ lb. meth on bus from California to distribute in Iowa

A woman who conspired to distribute methamphetamine was sentenced on May 15, 2019, to more than two years in federal prison.

On November 15, 2018, Jocelyn Mendoza, 23, from Selma, California, pled guilty to one count of conspiring to distribute methamphetamine.

At the plea hearing, Mendoza admitted that from about September 2017 through July 2018, she was involved in a conspiracy that distributed at least 300 grams of methamphetamine. Evidence at the hearing showed that Mendoza traveled by bus from Fresno, California to Sioux City, Iowa with approximately ¼ pound of methamphetamine hidden inside of a neck rest which she and another co-conspirator intended to distribute in Sioux City. Mendoza and the co-conspirator had twice previously transported ½ lb of meth from California to Iowa for redistribution.

Mendoza was sentenced by United States District Court Chief Judge Leonard T. Strand. Mendoza was sentenced to 32 months’ imprisonment. She must also serve a five year term of supervised release following her imprisonment. There is no parole in the federal system. Mendoza remains in custody of the U.S. Marshals Service until she can be transported to a federal prison.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Shawn S. Wehde and was investigated by Tri-State Drug Task Force based in Sioux City, Iowa, that consists of law enforcement personnel from the Drug Enforcement Administration; Sioux City, Iowa, Police Department; Homeland Security Investigations; Woodbury County Sheriff’s Office; South Sioux City, Nebraska, Police Department; Nebraska State Patrol; Iowa National Guard; Iowa Division of Narcotics Enforcement; United States Marshals Service; South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation; and Woodbury County Attorney’s Office.

Court file information at

The case file number is 18-4076. Follow us on Twitter @USAO_NDIA.

Updated May 16, 2019

Drug Trafficking