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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Texas

Thursday, August 11, 2016

San Antonio Texas Mexican Mafia Member Admits Role in Death of Balcones Heights Police Officer Julian Pesina

In San Antonio this morning, 35-year-old Texas Mexican Mafia (TMM) member Jerry Idrogo (aka “Spooks”) pleaded guilty to a federal charge claiming responsibility for two murders including the murder of Balcones Heights Police Officer Julian Pesina in May 2014 announced United States Attorney Richard L. Durbin, Jr., and Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent in Charge Christopher Combs, San Antonio Division. 

Appearing before United States District Judge Xavier Rodriguez, Idrogo pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to participate in a Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO).  As a result, Idrogo faces up to life in federal prison.

According to court records, Idrogo, a TMM Northside Sergeant, admitted to killing TMM member Billy Padilla in San Antonio on August 26, 2013, for failing to turn over drug proceeds to the organization.  Also, Idrogo admitted to participating in the murder of Officer Pesina outside his “Notorious Ink Tattoo and Piercing Studio” on May 4, 2014.  The factual basis filed in this case states that although he was a police officer, Pesina was simultaneously claiming membership in the TMM, had tattoos consistent with such membership, and was selling drugs to TMM members.  Idrogo, acting upon the orders of a superior, TMM member Ruben “Menace” Reyes, drove his co-defendants, 38-year-old TMM prospect Alfredo Cardona and 27–year-old TMM-member-in-bad-standing Jesse Santibanez, to Pesina’s business where Cardona and Santibanez shot and killed Pesina. 

By pleading guilty, Idrogo also admitted to conspiring with others to interfere with Commerce by extortion and to distribute methamphetamine, cocaine and heroin in furtherance of the Texas Mexican Mafia’s criminal enterprise.  Idrogo admittedly collected the “dime.”  The “dime” is a 10 percent tax imposed by the TMM on individuals who sell narcotics in their territory for assistance in collecting drug debts as well as a degree of protection from robbery and competing drug dealers. 

Idrogo remains in federal custody awaiting sentencing scheduled for November 16, 2015.  Cardona and Santibanez, who remain in federal custody, await jury selection and trial scheduled for October 17, 2016.  Reyes, who faces life imprisonment, is awaiting sentencing in September after pleading guilty last month to five counts of aiding and abetting the using and discharging of a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence; and, five counts of violent crime (murder) in aid of racketeering (VICAR).

This investigation was conducted by the FBI together with the San Antonio Police Department, Texas Department of Public Safety Criminal Investigations Division, Bexar County Sheriff’s Department, Frio County Sheriff’s Department, and the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. 

Drug Trafficking
Violent Crime
Updated August 11, 2016