Mexican National Charged with Smuggling Firearms into Mexico
DEL RIO, Texas – A federal grand jury in Del Rio returned an indictment last week charging a Mexican national with conspiring and attempting to smuggle firearms and ammunition into Mexico from the United States.
According to court documents, Jose Jesus Hernandez-Valle, 54, conspired with others to smuggle a 9mm pistol, a .40 caliber pistol, and more than 200 rounds of ammunition and other related firearm accessories into Mexico. The firearms were discovered and seized by Border Patrol Agents at the Del Rio International Port of Entry on Nov. 2.
Hernandez-Valle is charged with one count of conspiracy to smuggle goods from the U.S. and one count of smuggling goods from the U.S. The defendant is scheduled to make his initial court appearance Dec. 29 before U.S. Magistrate Judge Collis White of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. If convicted, he faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison on the conspiracy count and 10 years in prison for the smuggling goods count. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
U.S. Attorney Jaime Esparza of the Western District of Texas and Acting Special Agent in Charge Craig Larrabee of the Department of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) San Antonio Division made the announcement.
HSI and the U.S. Border Patrol are investigating the case.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Zachary Bird and Alex Brown are prosecuting the case.
An indictment is merely an allegation and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.