Eagle Pass Drug Trafficker Sentenced to Life in Federal Prison
In Del Rio, Luis Felipe Rodriguez (aka “Vaquero”), a 40-year-old former Eagle Pass resident and associate of the Los Zetas Drug Trafficking Organization, was sentenced yesterday afternoon to mandatory life in federal prison for his leadership role in cocaine trafficking and money laundering conspiracies announced United States Attorney Richard L. Durbin, Jr.; Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Special Agent in Charge Joseph M. Arabit, Houston Division; and, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Special Agent in Charge Shane Folden, San Antonio Division.
On September 3, 2015, a jury convicted Rodriguez of one count of conspiracy to possess cocaine with intent to distribute; one count of bulk cash smuggling; and, one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering.
During the trial, evidence was presented that Rodriguez and other co-conspirators transported from Piedras Negras, Mexico, into the United States over 25 kilograms of cocaine concealed in hidden compartments inside vehicles. Once the vehicles crossed through immigration checkpoints the cocaine was delivered to San Antonio, Houston and Waco, Texas. At that point, drug proceeds, totaling approximately $1.1 million dollars were loaded into the vehicle and Rodriguez and his co-conspirators transported the money back to Mexico.
Evidence was also presented at trial that revealed Rodriguez had two prior WDTX felony criminal convictions namely, in 2004 for possession with intent to distribute marijuana in Maverick County; and, in 2005 (while on bond for the previously mentioned offense) for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 100 kilograms or more of marijuana in Maverick County.
Rodriguez was arrested in Eagle Pass on January 16, 2014. He has remained in federal custody ever since.
This joint investigation was conducted by the DEA and HSI together with the U.S. Border Patrol, Texas Department of Public Safety-Criminal Investigations Division and the Eagle Pass Police Department.