Skip to main content
Press Release

Zeta Cartel Member Convicted In Conspiracy To Smuggle Firearms/Grenades Into Mexico

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

LAREDO, Texas – Richard John Medina aka “El Guero,” 40, of Laredo, has entered a plea of guilty to being a felon in possession of multiple firearms and grenades, announced United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson.

On Oct. 9, 2013, Medina was arrested at his Laredo residence in possession of five firearms and five grenades. As part of the plea, Medina admitted he attempted to traffic and export these items from the United States into Mexico, exclusively for the Mexican Zeta Cartel.

Medina was hired to export the weapons for $2,500. Medina was to receive half the payment upfront, with the remainder paid upon delivery of the weapons to a Zeta Cartel house in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico. On Oct. 9, 2013, Medina received the weapons and was subsequently arrested in the United States. Investigation revealed Medina was a convicted felon and did not have permission under the International Traffic in Arms Regulations to export these military defense weapons. 

U.S. District Judge Diana Saldana will set a date for sentencing in the near future. At the time of the hearing, Medina will face up to 10 years in prison and a possible $250,000 fine.

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Homeland Security Investigations and the Laredo Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sanjeev Bhasker and Homero Ramirez are prosecuting.

Updated April 30, 2015