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Press Release

5-Time Illegal Alien Handed Significant Sentence for Trafficking Meth

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

BROWNSVILLE, Texas – A 44-year-old undocumented alien from Matamoros, Tamaulipas, Mexico, has been ordered to federal prison for possession with intent to distribute 4.4 pounds of methamphetamine at the time he attempted an illegal entry into the United States, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Abe Martinez. Juan Francisco Lopez-Hernandez pleaded guilty to both charges Aug. 23, 2016. 


Today, U.S. District Judge Andrew S. Hanen ordered Lopez-Hernandez to serve a 137-month-term of imprisonment for the drug charges as well as 120 months for being an alien unlawfully found in the United States after deportation. The sentences will run concurrently. He was also ordered to serve an additional 12 months, three of which three will be served consecutively, for committing the offenses while on supervised release for a previous conviction of being an alien illegally in the country. At the hearing, the court heard evidence indicating Lopez-Hernandez had been previously convicted three other times for being an alien unlawfully found in the United States after deportation. He is again expected to face deportation proceedings following his total 140-month sentence.


On April 3, 2016, a Cameron County Sheriff’s Office deputy attempted to conduct a traffic stop in Brownsville. However, Lopez-Hernandez sped away and eventually crashed his vehicle and fled on foot. He was soon apprehended. Authorities conducted an inspection of his vehicle which resulted in the discovery of 4.4 pounds of methamphetamine. They also learned that Lopez-Hernandez was an undocumented alien who had previously been deported. 


Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Angel Castro is prosecuting the case.

Updated November 21, 2017

Drug Trafficking