Meth Dealer Sentenced to 25 Years in U.S. Federal Prison After Fleeing to Mexico | USAO-NDTX

(USDOJ.Today) A local meth dealer has been sentenced to 25 years in federal prison for drug conspiracy, announced U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas Erin Nealy Cox.

Salvador Martinez, 31, of Grand Prairie, Texas, was arrested in August 2013 and pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine in January 2014.

However, Mr. Martinez failed to appear for sentencing and a warrant was issued for his arrest. Following an exhaustive investigation by the U.S. Marshals Service, he was captured in Mexico in December 2019.  He was sentenced Thursday to 300 months in federal prison by U.S. District Judge Jane J. Boyle.

According to his plea papers, Mr. Martinez admits he conspired with several individuals to distribute meth in Texas and Mexico.  He admits that his coconspirators prepared the methamphetamine, which he then picked up and transported to his residence. On one occasion, he told his coconspirators that the drugs needed to “look better.”  The plea paperwork reflects he also agreed to forfeit a Tuarus revolver and ammunition.

A total of 23 defendants were indicted in this case.  Including Mr. Martinez, 16 defendants have pleaded guilty and been sentenced, one was dismissed, and five remain fugitives.

Significant sentences in this case include:

  • Gerardo Cisneros, of Arlington, Texas, was sentenced to 240 months for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine, plus 240 months for money laundering.
  • Israel De la Cruz Sotelo, a.k.a. Rale, of Piedras Negras, Coahuila, Mexico, was sentenced to 151 months for his role in methamphetamine and marijuana distribution conspiracies.
  • Israel De La Cruz Sotelo was sentenced on September 13, 2018, after being extradited from the Republic of Mexico.

The case is part of an Organized Crime Drug Task Force (OCDETF) Investigation.  Established in 1982, the OCDETF program aims to attack and reduce the supply of illegal drugs entering the United States and to diminish violence and other criminal activity associated with the drug trade.  OCDETF works with federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies to identify, disrupt, and dismantle, drug traffickers and drug trafficking networks.

This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration’s Dallas Field Office, the Dallas Police Department, and the Garland Police Department.  The U.S. Marshal’s Service, provided special assistance, as did U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and the Department’s Office of International Affairs, which handled the extradition request. The Justice Department thanks the Fiscalía General de la Republica de Mexico (FGR) (Prosecutor General of the Republic of Mexico) and law enforcement authorities in Mexico for their support as well.

Assistant United States Attorney George Leal prosecuted the case.

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