A dual U.S.-Mexican citizen pleaded guilty today to willfully engaging in financial dealings with Mexican companies that had been identified as Specially Designated Narcotics Traffickers by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).
According to court documents, Jessica Johanna Oseguera Gonzalez, 34, of Guadalajara, Mexico, violated the criminal penalties of the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Designation Act (the Kingpin Act) by engaging in property transactions with six Mexican businesses that OFAC previously designated to be “specially designated narcotics traffickers.” These six businesses were so designated because they provided material support to the Mexican drug trafficking organization known as the Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generacion (CJNG), which was itself designated by OFAC in April 2015. Oseguera Gonzalez’s father, Nemesio Ruben Oseguera Cervantes, aka “El Mencho,” who is the leader of CJNG, and her uncle, Abigael Gonzalez Valencia, who is the leader of the Los Cuinis drug trafficking organization, were also sanctioned by OFAC in April 2015.
“The Kingpin Act is a critically important tool in the U.S. government’s unrelenting efforts to target foreign drug cartels that seek to flood American streets with illegal drugs,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Nicholas L. McQuaid of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “The Department of Justice will aggressively investigate and criminally prosecute those who willfully violate Treasury Department sanctions under the Kingpin Act, as a key component of our broader whole-of-government strategy to dismantle and disrupt foreign drug cartels.”
“Today’s guilty plea is a result of our relentless commitment to disrupt and dismantle all aspects of the CJNG organization,” said Special Agent in Charge Bill Bodner of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) Los Angeles Field Division. “Our efforts will continue to include a focus on those who facilitate these illicit drug networks. Together with the Department of Justice, we will use all the investigative tools available, including OFAC designations, to bring to justice those who engage in illegal activity that is fueling the drug crisis nationwide.”
Court documents indicate that Oseguera Gonzalez was an owner of two Mexican companies designated by OFAC, J&P Advertising S.A. de C.V., and JJGON S.P.R. de R.L. de C.V., and that she was an officer, director, or agent of four additional sanctioned businesses, Las Flores Cabanas, Mizu Sushi Lounge, Tequila Onze Black, and Operadora Los Famosos S.A. de C.V., doing business as Kenzo Sushi. She remained an owner, officer, director, or agent of those entities following their OFAC designations, and did not seek the required license from OFAC to engage in those financial transactions.
Oseguera Gonzalez pleaded guilty to willfully violating the Kingpin Act’s prohibitions on engaging in transactions or dealings in property with entities or persons sanctioned under the Kingpin Act, and to being an officer, director, or agent of entities who knowingly participated in Kingpin Act violations. She is scheduled to be sentenced on June 11 and faces a maximum penalty of up to 30 years in prison. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
The DEA’s Los Angeles Field Division is investigating the case, and the Justice Department particularly thanks the Office of Foreign Assets Control of the Department of the Treasury for its support. The Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs provided investigative assistance.
Trial Attorneys Brett Reynolds, Kaitlin Sahni, and Kate Naseef of the Justice Department’s Narcotic and Dangerous Drug Section are prosecuting the case.
This case received significant support from the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) program. The OCDETF program supports investigations around the country to identify, disrupt, dismantle and prosecute high-level members of drug trafficking, weapons trafficking, and money laundering organizations and enterprises.