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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, December 18, 2018

New VIDEO: Trafficker with Massive Network Leads Law Enforcement on Wild Car Chase

Grand Prairie PD Chases Drug Trafficker Who Fled From Undercover Buy

Newly-released dash cam video shows the moment a drug trafficker with a distribution network worth hundreds of thousands of dollars fled the scene of an undercover drug buy.

At the wheel was Israel Vasquez, a 46 year-old-citizen of Mexico, who was sentenced last week to life in prison after pleading guilty to drug and money laundering charges earlier this year.

According to law enforcement, Mr. Vasquez’ methamphetamine distribution network stretched from Michoacán, Mexico, across the southern border, and into Texas and Louisiana. The drug ring netted hundreds of thousands of dollars in proceeds wired to his alias, “Adan Perez.”

Not long before the footage was recorded in March 2016, Grand Prairie Police officers initiated an undercover drug buy with a man later identified as Mr. Vasquez.  He agreed to meet an undercover agent behind a retail store in Grand Prairie. Just before the meeting, however, Mr. Vasquez seemed to grow suspicious, pitching about half a kilogram of meth out his car window and speeding away. The subsequent footage shows he led Grand Prairie Police on a wild chase, zig zagging through heavy traffic on Interstate 20, blasting through stop lights, and driving the wrong way on residential streets.  

After he ditched the vehicle, agents located a receipt inside that noted his alias, Adan Perez. They tracked Mr. Vasquez to Seattle, where he was arrested weeks later.

At sentencing, prosecutors revealed that at the time of the chase, Mr. Vasquez was a fugitive from justice, having fled to Mexico in 2010 after pleading guilty in another drug and money laundering case in 2009. While on the lam, Mr. Vasquez conspired with several co-defendants, including his wife and sister, to deal controlled substances, including meth and heroin, and move drug money into Mexico.   

According to law enforcement agents, in 2013, Vasquez was kidnapped by a cartel and tortured due to a drug debt; as soon as his family raised money to release him, he returned to dealing, and eventually traveled to the Dallas area, where he continued to deal meth and heroin.

Testimony revealed that his drug cell included his wife, Amber Vasquez, sentenced to 115 months on drug and money laundering charges; his sister, Mia Vasquez, sentenced to 38 months custody on drug charges;  David De Los Santos, sentenced to 151 months custody on drug and money laundering charges; and Melvin Williams, sentenced to 121 months custody on drug charges. He also had ties to notorious dealer Javier Guerra, a.k.a. Chop, who was sentenced to a term of 480 months on drug charges and 240 months on money laundering charges in August, testimony showed.  

The FBI, Dallas Police Department and Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation led the investigation with assistance from the Grand Prairie Police Department; the Texas Department of Public Safety; the DFW Department of Public Safety; the U.S. Department of State; the Drug Enforcement Administration; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives; the Transportation Security Administration; the U.S. Secret Service; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Enforcement and Removal Operations; and the Fort Worth, McKinney, Mesquite, and Plano Police Departments. Assistant U.S. Attorneys George Leal, John Kull, and John De La Garza prosecuted the case for the government.The FBI, Dallas Police Department and Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation led the investigation with assistance from the Grand Prairie Police Department; the Texas Department of Public Safety; the DFW Department of Public Safety; the U.S. Department of State; the Drug Enforcement Administration; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives; the Transportation Security Administration; the U.S. Secret Service; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Enforcement and Removal Operations; and the Fort Worth, McKinney, Mesquite, and Plano Police Departments. Assistant U.S. Attorneys George Leal, John Kull, and John De La Garza prosecuted the case for the government. 

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Component(s): 
Contact: 
Erin Dooley Public Affairs Officer at 214-659-8707 erin.dooley@usdoj.gov
Updated December 18, 2018