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Press Release

Las Cruces man sentenced to over 26 years in prison for federal firearms, narcotics conviction

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

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Alexander M.M. Uballez, United States Attorney for the District of New Mexico, announced that Paul Michael Astorga was sentenced on Dec. 8 to 26 years and eight months in prison. A federal jury convicted Astorga, 36, of Las Cruces, New Mexico, on Dec. 16 on one count each of being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition, possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

On Jan. 21, 2016, Astorga was sentenced three years and five months in prison, followed by a three-year term of supervised release with special conditions. Due to several violations of the terms of Astorga’s supervised release, a Petition for Revocation of Supervised Release was filed on Oct. 27, 2020, and an arrest warrant was issued on Oct. 28, 2020. On Nov. 3, 2020, Astorga was found in possession of a loaded 9mm handgun and 66 fentanyl pills.

Astorga was previously convicted of multiple felonies, including robbery, possession of a controlled substance, tampering with evidence, trafficking by possession with intent to distribute, and being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition. As a previously convicted felon, Astorga cannot legally possess firearms or ammunition.

Upon his release from prison, Astorga will be subject to three years of supervised release.

The FBI, United States Marshals Service and Las Cruces Police Department Metro Narcotics Taskforce investigated this case. Assistant United States Attorneys Maria Y. Armijo and Joni Autrey Stahl prosecuted the case.

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Updated December 9, 2022

Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses
Press Release Number: 22-273