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Press Release

Fourteen-year sentence for Middletown man who laundered money for Sinaloa drug cartel

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

CINCINNATI – Raul Trejo, 54, of Middletown, was sentenced to 168 months in prison for laundering money as part of a Middletown drug conspiracy tied to the Sinaloa Drug Cartel in Mexico.

Trejo was one of 12 individuals charged by a federal grand jury in Cincinnati in a narcotics and money laundering conspiracy. Members of the group distributed fentanyl from Mexico in Middletown and sent proceeds back to Mexico. Trejo’s role was to collect and package cash he received from ringleader Donte Holdbrook, who was in charge of selling the fentanyl, and see that it was taken back to Mexico to buy more fentanyl. Investigators documented multiple transactions including one involving three shoeboxes containing nearly $200,000 in cash during a transaction in November 2016.

Holdbrook, the Middletown ringleader, pleaded guilty in October 2018 and is awaiting sentencing. He faces at least 10 years and up to life in prison.

David M. DeVillers, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio; Chris Hoffman, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Cincinnati Field Office, Police Chief Eliot K. Isaac, Middletown Police Chief Rodney Muterspaw, Preble County Prosecuting Attorney Martin P. Votel and Ohio State Highway Patrol Superintendent Col. Paul A. Pride announced the sentence handed down by U.S. District Judge Timothy S. Black. District Criminal Chief Karl Kadon and Assistant U.S. Attorney Kenneth L. Parker are representing the United States in this case.

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Updated February 27, 2020

Drug Trafficking