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Press Release

Lexington Man Sentenced for Firearm and Drug Trafficking Crimes

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Nebraska

Acting United States Attorney Susan T. Lehr announced that Melecio Meza Salamanca, 29, of Lexington, Nebraska, was sentenced on July 6, 2023, in federal court in Lincoln, Nebraska, for possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.  Senior United States District Judge John M. Gerrard sentenced Salamanca to 144 months of imprisonment.  There is no parole in the federal system.  After his release from prison, Salamanca will begin a five-year term of supervised release.

On October 12, 2021, a Merrick County Nebraska deputy sheriff stopped Salamanca and the co-defendant Mark Barraza as they drove through Central City, Nebraska.  Salamanca was driving and Barraza was in the passenger seat.  The deputy searched the car and located a .45 caliber pistol and approximately 180 grams of actual methamphetamine.  Salamanca was knowingly in possession of the pistol and intended to distribute the methamphetamine.  On March 24, 2023, Barraza was sentenced to 133 months in prison for his role in the offenses.

This case was investigated by the Merrick County Sheriff’s Office, the Nebraska State Patrol, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. 


Matt E. Lierman – Chief, Drug Enforcement Unit (402) 661-3700

Updated July 7, 2023

Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses