Meth Smuggler Handed Significant Sentence
BROWNSVILLE, Texas – A 36-year-old Brownsville resident has been ordered to federal prison following his conviction of conspiracy and methamphetamine smuggling, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick. A federal jury sitting in Brownsville convicted Jesus Yzaguirre Jr. March 12, 2018, following a six-day trial and less than three hours of deliberation.
Today, U.S. District Judge Rolando Olvera handed Yzaguirre Jr. a 200-month sentence to be immediately followed by five years of supervised release. In handing down the sentence, the court noted the evidence which the government had presented to the jury and Yzaguirre’s attempts to obstruct justice by trying to get others to conceal a van and not talk to investigating agents.
The jury heard that on Feb. 25, 2017, Yzaguirre drove into the United States through the Gateway Port of Entry in Brownsville. At primary inspection, Yzaguirre said he had gone into Mexico to “borrow the van” he was driving from his uncle. He was referred for secondary inspection, at which time he then said he had gone into Mexico to pick up the van which belonged to him. Agents searched the van and discovered 29.4 kilograms of methamphetamine hidden within the floorboard and frame compartments.
Yzaguirre then gave a statement saying he thought he was bringing the van in for another person to use for alien smuggling. The person, a female friend whom he “bumped into in Matamoros,” asked him to pick up the van at a parking lot, according to his statement. She was to pay him $50 for taking it into the U.S. and parking it at a certain location. Yzaguirre said he had previously done the same thing with a different van which he parked somewhere in Brownsville.
Further investigation revealed Yzaguirre had in fact crossed a commercial van on three other occasions, each time going through the Sarita checkpoint. Agents interviewed an acquaintance of Yzaguirre who said Yzaguirre had admitted to knowing there were drugs in the van when he was arrested and that he had been working for “La Guera” who was in charge of the drug loads.
Yzaguirre was convicted of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 29.4 kilograms of methamphetamine, possession with intent to distribute the methamphetamine, conspiracy to import methamphetamine and importation of methamphetamine with intent to distribute
Yzaguirre has been and will remain in custody pending that hearing.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations conducted the investigation with the assistance of Customs and Border Protection. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Oscar Ponce and Angel Castro are prosecuting the case.