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Press Release

Texas Man Handed Significant Sentence for Trafficking Meth

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

BROWNSVILLE, Texas – A 31-year-old Houston man has been ordered to federal prison for possession with intent to distribute more than 15 kilograms of methamphetamine, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Abe Martinez. Clifton Teran pleaded guilty Oct. 11, 2016.


Today, U.S. District Judge Andrew S. Hanen ordered Teran to serve 300 months in federal prison. He also received a 12-month-term for committing the offense while on supervised release in a previous federal case which will be served conurrently. The 25-year-term of imprisonment will be followed by another five years of supervised release. Teran’s sentence included upward adjustment or increases in his calculated sentencing guideline range because he was found to be a leader within the conspiracy and also because the methamphetamine was imported from Mexico into the United States.


Teran, Javier Jose Garza and Ilsse Lizeth Pena were part of a drug trafficking organization that imported methamphetamine and cocaine from Mexico through the Brownsville ports of entry. The narcotics were concealed within vehicle batteries or in sealed candy bags. Based out of Matamoros, Mexico, the drug trafficking organization would then have the narcotics transported to Houston for distribution to others.


On Dec. 14, 2015, Garza drove a vehicle to the Gateway International Bridge in Brownsville. Upon inspection, authorities discovered 15.66 kilograms of methamphetamine concealed within the vehicle. Teran and Pena made entry into the United States in a separate vehicle approximately three minutes after Garza attempted entry with the narcotics. They were apprehended as they attempted to return to Houston the following day at the Sarita Border Patrol checkpoint.


Pena, 25, of Houston, and Garza, 36, of Dayton, also pleaded guilty and were sentenced to 66 and 120 months, respectively.


All three have been and will remain in custody.


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


Updated August 15, 2017

Drug Trafficking