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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Texas

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Co-Defendant In Cocaine Distribution Conspiracy Case Involving Former NFL Player Sam Hurd Is Sentenced To A Total Of 127 Months In Federal Prison

DALLAS — Jesse Tyrone Chavful, 46, of San Antonio, Texas, was sentenced this afternoon, by U.S. District Judge Jorge A. Solis, to serve a total of 127 months in federal prison, announced U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña of the Northern District of Texas.

Chavful, who admitted he agreed to help his cousin, former professional football player Samuel George Hurd, III, acquire cocaine to sell others, pleaded guilty in October 2012 to one count of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine. When he committed the instant offense, Chavful was on supervision for a federal drug-related firearm offense. Because Chavful committed this offense while on supervision, the district court revoked his supervision and ordered that he serve 30 months imprisonment, to be served consecutively to the 97-month sentence that he received for the instant offense.

Another defendant in the case, Toby Lujan, 28, is scheduled to be sentenced on January 8, 2014.  He pleaded guilty to one count of possession with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine and faces a maximum statutory penalty of not less than five years or more than 40 years in prison and a fine of up to $5 million.

According to plea documents filed in the Chavful case, from July 2011 through early June 2012, Chavful agreed to help Hurd acquire cocaine to sell to others.  While Hurd played professional football for the Dallas Cowboys, he conspired with others to possess with the intent to distribute cocaine and marijuana, and the conspiracy continued after he began playing football for the Chicago Bears.

During fall 2011, Chavful conspired with Hurd to obtain 10 kilograms of cocaine for Hurd to distribute to others.  According to the factual resume, while Hurd was playing football for the Chicago Bears, he contacted Chavful and asked him to find 10 kilograms of cocaine.  Chavful then met with witnesses at his T-shirt shop in San Antonio and negotiated for 10 kilograms of cocaine for Hurd.  On November 10, 2011, Chavful and a witness discussed drug loads going “north,” that is, to Hurd in Chicago.  Chavful advised the witness not to worry about the payment because Hurd had money.  Chavful also cautioned that Hurd could not be present when the drugs were delivered because of media concerns. 

During spring 2012, while on pre-trial release for pending federal drug offenses, Hurd met with Chavful at his San Antonio T-shirt shop and asked him to get him cocaine and marijuana.  In late May, Chavful met with a witness and agreed to buy five kilograms of cocaine and 200 pounds of marijuana, and told the witness that Hurd, whom he described as “the money,” was in on the transaction and ready to move.  On June 6, 2012, federal law enforcement officers arrested Chavful after the witness and an undercover officer delivered the drugs to Chavful.  Chavful admitted that he had phoned Hurd that day, at the telephone number listed under “Big Sam” in his cell phone contacts, to let Hurd know about the drugs.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) investigated.  Deputy Criminal Chief Assistant U.S. Attorney Gary Tromblay and Assistant U.S. Attorney John Kull are prosecuting.

Updated June 22, 2015