A former Customs and Border Patrol agent and his ex-wife will spend 12 years in prison for drug possession. The pair ran an extensive drug trafficking operation that transported cocaine, heroin and marijuana from the southern border to Chicago.
In December, a jury found the man and his former wife guilty of drug trafficking and money laundering. They also found the pair guilty of making false statements to law enforcement. Previously, the man had worked for CBP for 25 years. In that time, he worked at the John Wayne and Ontario international airports. According to prosecutors, the man’s CBP responsibilities did not aid the drug trafficking operation.
Federal investigators discovered the conspiracy after New Mexico law enforcement officials stopped a semi-truck loaded with drugs. The driver was transporting cocaine, heroin and marijuana worth about $1.5 million at the time of his arrest.
The driver identified the customs agent and his wife as his employers. According to the driver, he would transport the drugs to Chicago and collect sales proceeds. While in Chicago, he would deposit the proceeds into a bank there. Initially, the agent told investigators that he and his wife did not know the driver. They also claimed that the money was mistakenly deposited into the wife’s account.
California drug possession attorney
Although California has modified its approach to drug crimes, the federal government still actively prosecutes drug possession for sale. When you face federal drug crime charges, hire an experienced federal criminal defense attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has more than 30 years of experience in federal criminal defense. He takes cases in any federal circuit in the United States.
Federal officials constantly seek to reduce the flow of drugs into the country. They aggressively pursue drug trafficking operations because violent crime often accompanies them.
More than half of federal felons currently in custody are serving time for drug crimes. In addition, federal prosecutors can pursue racketeering charges against large drug operations. A RICO conviction can send you to prison for life.
Don’t assume that you have no options when you’re charged with federal drug crimes, and don’t assume that a guilty plea is your best strategy.
Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (310) 456-3317, (818) 591-2809 or (805) 273-5611 for an immediate consultation on your Los Angeles County drug possession case.
Photo Credit: Grant Wickes, via Flickr.com