McALLEN, Texas — A South Texas man was sentenced Monday for smuggling heroin and methamphetamines following an investigation conducted by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
On Nov. 28, a federal judge sentenced Gerardo Jimenez, 31, of Pharr, Texas, to serve up to 188 months in prison to be immediately followed by three years of supervised release. Jimenez pleaded guilty May 12. At the time of his plea, Jimenez admitted that on Nov. 3, 2020, he knowingly entered the Hidalgo Border Patrol Port of Entry with drugs in his car. At the sentencing hearing, prosecutors provided additional evidence regarding Jimenez’s smuggling attempt and how the large amounts of heroin and meth Jimenez smuggled were a danger to the community. In handing down the sentence, the court noted that drug transportation is a serious offense and that Jimenez willingly participated as a transporter on behalf of a cartel.
“This sentence of more than 15 years in federal prison sends a clear message to criminal organizations that there are serious consequences for trafficking controlled substances,” said Craig Larrabee, acting special agent in charge of HSI San Antonio. “HSI will continue to pursue cross-border conspiracy investigations to target dangerous individuals who threaten the security of the United States.”
According to court documents, upon inspection, a K-9 alerted authorities to the hood of Jimenez’s vehicle. There, they discovered four kilograms of heroin and two kilograms of 100% pure meth concealed in his car’s battery. The drugs had an estimated street value of $654,000.
Jimenez will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Eliza Carmen Rodriguez prosecuted the case.
For additional information about HSI’s investigative efforts, follow @HSI_SanAntonio.
HSI is a directorate of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the principal investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, responsible for investigating transnational crime and threats, specifically those criminal organizations that exploit the global infrastructure through which international trade, travel and finance move. HSI’s workforce of over 10,400 employees consists of more than 6,800 special agents assigned to 225 cities throughout the United States, and 93 overseas locations in 56 countries. HSI’s international presence represents DHS’s largest investigative law enforcement presence abroad and one of the largest international footprints in U.S. law enforcement.
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