Mexican National Convicted at Cocaine-Trafficking Trial
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Alabama
MOBILE, AL – A federal jury convicted a Mexican national last week for possessing with intent to distribute multiple kilograms of cocaine.
According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, Gilberto Gonzalez-Gonzalez, 44, of Houston, Texas, was driving a flatbed truck from Houston to Atlanta, Georgia when he was stopped by a Baldwin County sheriff’s deputy for a traffic violation on Interstate 65. The jury heard evidence that on January 25, 2021, Gonzalez had driven the truck from Texas to Alabama while his passenger and codefendant, Daniel Eric Corona, slept. Gonzalez and Corona lacked proper paperwork for the load that they were purporting to haul and had no valid proof of insurance.
During a consent search of the truck, deputies pried open a locked compartment and found a duffel bag containing 16 individually wrapped bundles of cocaine weighing more than 35 pounds in total. According to expert testimony presented at trial, the cocaine had a wholesale value of more than $500,000 and a street value of more than $6 million. The jury also reviewed evidence from Gonzalez’s cell phone containing images of cocaine and WhatsApp messages discussing “kilos” and prices of cocaine. Gonzalez’s crime carries a potential sentence of ten years to life in prison. He will be sentenced by United States District Judge Terry F. Moorer in February 2022.
Corona pleaded guilty to a cocaine-trafficking conspiracy charge in September 2021. He also faces ten years to life in prison and will be sentenced by Judge Moorer on December 16, 2021.
U.S. Attorney Sean P. Costello of the Southern District of Alabama made the announcement.
The Drug Enforcement Administration, Homeland Security Investigations, and the Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office Drug Task Force investigated the case.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Justin Roller and Deborah Griffin prosecuted the case on behalf of the United States.
Updated October 25, 2021