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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Mexico

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, October 13, 2016

Arizona Man Sentenced to Prison for Federal Heroin Trafficking Conviction in New Mexico

Case Prosecuted as Part of HOPE Initiative which Seeks to Reduce the Number of Opioid-Related Deaths in New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE – Rodolfo Rene Ley, 25, of Phoenix, Ariz., was sentenced this afternoon in federal court in Albuquerque, N.M., to 70 months in prison for his heroin trafficking conviction in New Mexico. Ley will be on supervised release for four years after he completes his prison sentence.

Ley was arrested at the Amtrak Train Station in Albuquerque on May 13, 2016, after the DEA found approximately one kilogram of heroin in three clear plastic wrapped bundles under Ley’s clothing during an interdiction investigation.

Ley was subsequently indicted on May 25, 2016, and charged with possession of heroin with intent to distribute on May 13, 2016, in Bernalillo County, N.M.  On June 30, 2016, Ley pled guilty to the indictment.  In his plea agreement, Ley admitted that he voluntarily consented to have a DEA agent search him at the Amtrak Train Station in Albuquerque on May 13, 2016.  During the search, the agent discovered oblong bundles containing heroin in Ley’s jeans.

This case was investigated by the Albuquerque office of the DEA.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Eva Fontanez prosecuted the case as part of the New Mexico Heroin and Opioid Prevention and Education (HOPE) Initiative. 

The HOPE Initiative was launched in January 2015 by the UNM Health Sciences Center and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in response to the national opioid epidemic, which has had a disproportionately devastating impact on New Mexico.  Opioid addiction has taken a toll on public safety, public health and the economic viability of our communities.  Working in partnership with the DEA, the Bernalillo County Opioid Accountability Initiative, Healing Addiction in our Community (HAC), the Albuquerque Public Schools and other community stakeholders, HOPE’s principal goals are to protect our communities from the dangers associated with heroin and opioid painkillers and reducing the number of opioid-related deaths in New Mexico. 

The HOPE Initiative is comprised of five components:  (1) prevention and education; (2) treatment; (3) law enforcement; (4) reentry; and (5) strategic planning.  HOPE’s law enforcement component is led by the Organized Crime Section of the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the DEA in conjunction with their federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement partners.  Targeting members of major heroin and opioid trafficking organizations for investigation and prosecution is a priority of the HOPE Initiative.  Learn more about the New Mexico HOPE Initiative at http://www.HopeInitiativeNM.org.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Component(s): 
Updated October 13, 2016