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Press Release

Mexican national heads to prison for trafficking narcotics in batteries

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

BROWNSVILLE, Texas – A 40-year-old man illegally residing in Edinburg has been ordered to federal prison following his conviction of trafficking meth, announced U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani.

Pedro Castillo-Lopez pleaded guilty March 9 to possession with intent to distribute approximately 31.83 pounds of meth.

U.S. District Judge Rolando Olvera has now ordered Castillo-Lopez to serve 96 months in federal prison. Not a U.S. citizen, Castillo-Lopez is expected to face removal proceedings following his imprisonment. In handing down the sentence, the court noted Castillo-Lopez will now have a felony conviction for and could spend the rest of his life in prison if he commits another felony or drug crime.

On Oct. 26, 2021, law enforcement observed Pedro Castillo-Lopez arrive at a hardware store parking lot located in Harlingen. Castillo approached another vehicle and transferred two commercial vehicle batteries from his vehicle to that one.

Authorities were able to confiscate the batteries. They broke one open and found what tested positive for the characteristics of heroin and meth. Further analysis later confirmed both drugs.

Castillo-Lopez had been previously removed from the country and did not have lawful presence in the United States. He has been and will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

Homeland Security Investigations conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney David Coronado prosecuted the case.

Updated August 16, 2023

Drug Trafficking