A Lubbock woman who received shipments of methamphetamine via mail has been sentenced to 210 months in federal prison, announced Acting U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas Prerak Shah.
Vanessa Rena Torres, 35, pleaded guilty in September to possession with the intent to distribute methamphetamine. She was sentenced on Thursday before U.S. District Judge James Wesley Hendrix.
According to court documents, U.S. Customs and Border Protection assigned to the FedEx hub in Memphis, Tennessee identified a package inaccurately labeled as food products destined for Lubbock, Texas. CBPO x-rayed and opened the package and located 3.15 kilograms of methamphetamine concealed inside seasoning packets.
HSI agents conducted a controlled delivery of the package to its original destination in Lubbock, Texas. Ms. Torres accepted delivery of the methamphetamine-filled parcel.
Later that evening, agents executed a search warrant at the Lubbock residence and located the package in the master bedroom closet. During asearch of the residence, agents were able to obtain receipts from money transfer to Mexico via Western Union.
When questioned by law enforcement, Ms. Torres admitted that she had been distributing methamphetamine in Lubbock for approximately two years. A male from Mexico known as “El Tio” sent her the parcel for drug trafficking. Torres also stated that “El Tio” had previously sent her one kilogram of methamphetamine which she had sold for approximately $10,000.
In March, Roger Pinon, 30, was sentenced to 41 months in federal prison for international money laundering in connection to his role in the methamphetamine trafficking conspiracy.
Homeland Security Investigations, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and the Lubbock Police Department conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen Rancourt prosecuted the case.