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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Texas

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Firearm Possession Lands Mexican Citizen In Federal Prison

BROWNSVILLE, Texas – Luis Ivan Nino-Duenes, 28, of Control, Tamaulipas, Mexico, has been sentenced to prison following his convicted of being an alien in possession of a firearm, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today. Nino-Duenes pleaded guilty on June 19, 2012, immediately prior to jury selection in his trial.

Yesterday, U.S. District Court Judge Hilda G. Tagle, who accepted the guilty plea, handed him a 60-month prison term and three years of supervised release after he completes his term of incarceration. At the hearing yesterday, additional evidence was presented including that Nino-Durenes was a member of the Gulf Cartel for three years prior to his arrest and an enforcer for Plaza Boss Jose Luis Zuniga-Hernandez. Evidence was also presented that while in jail on this case, Nino-Duenes joined the prison gang known at the “Partido Revolutionario Mijicano” (PRM). The court found that he obstructed justice by joining the PRM and attempting to intimidate a witness.

At sentencing, Nino-Duenes argued that he did not join the PRM or obstruct justice. He argued that the federal sentencing guidelines called for a sentence of 21 months given he pleaded guilty and accepted responsibility for his crime.

In handing down the sentence, Judge Tagle indicated the court would issue a non-guideline sentence, noting the defendant’s flight from a gunfight in Mexico was an example of spill over violence. The court stated that “crime begins over there (Mexico) and ends over here (U.S).”

At the time of his guilty plea, Nino-Duenes admitted he had entered the United States illegally and that at the time of his arrest he was in possession of a customized gold, diamond and ruby encrusted Colt 38 Super handgun.

Nino-Duenes has been in custody since his arrest on Oct. 26, 2011, where he will remain pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

The investigation leading to the charges was conducted by Homeland Security Investigations.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Angel Castro.

Updated April 30, 2015