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Press Release

Brownsville man learns fate after attempting to smuggle drugs

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

BROWNSVILLE, Texas - A 35-year-old local man has been sentenced following his conviction of attempting to deliver cocaine, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery.

Jose Isaac Martinez pleaded guilty June 2.

Today, U.S. District Judge Rolando Olvera ordered Martinez to serve an-84 month sentence to be immediately followed by four years of supervised release.

“Today’s sentence not only holds Martinez accountable for his crimes, but serves as a warning to those who are contemplating drug trafficking,” said Special Agent in Charge Shane Folden of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). “HSI will continue to use every resource available to identify smugglers like Martinez, who distribute this poison to the citizens throughout the United States.”

On July 7, 2019, Luigui Ortiz-Rosales attempted entry into the United States from Mexico driving a Mercury Villager minivan at the Brownsville Veterans International Bridge. During inspection, authorities removed four rectangular packages of suspected narcotics from the natural void of the rear quarter panels.

The packages field tested positive for cocaine and weighed approximately 4.70 kilograms with an estimated street value of $94,000.

The investigation ultimately led law enforcement to Martinez. They had observed an F-150 pickup truck circling the parking lot of a shopping center location in Brownsville. Martinez was the driver. He stopped the vehicle, exited and approached the location where law enforcement had already arrested Ortiz-Rosales. The investigation revealed Martinez was to pick up the narcotics and deliver them to a grocery store parking lot in Brownsville.

Ortiz-Rosales, 38, of Mexico, ultimately pleaded guilty and was later sentenced to 30 months in federal prison to be followed by two years of supervised release.

Martinez has been and will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

HSI and Customs and Border Protection conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney David Coronado prosecuted the case.

Updated May 19, 2021

Drug Trafficking