News from around the state of Texas

Texan Gets 20 Years for Using Unsuspecting Drivers to Smuggle Drugs

Group planted drugs in cars of unsuspecting drivers

Wednesday, Sep 12, 2012  |  Updated 10:04 AM CDT
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
Man Sentenced in Unique Smuggling Case

Getty Images

advertisement

A West Texas man has been sentenced to 20 years in federal prison after tons of drugs were smuggled using vehicles of unsuspecting drivers.

Prosecutors say 38-year-old Jesus Chavez of El Paso must also pay nearly $142,000 in restitution. Chavez in May pleaded guilty to conspiracy to import marijuana.

Investigators say smugglers identified cars frequently using a dedicated commuter lane from Mexico into Texas.

Smugglers would obtain copies of keys to the vehicles and then slip bags of marijuana into the trunks. The bags were retrieved in Texas.

Prosecutors say about 6,600 pounds of marijuana moved from Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, into El Paso before the scam fell apart in 2011. Smugglers targeted the car of an award-winning teacher whose arrest drew outrage and media attention.

Chavez was sentenced Monday.

Get the latest headlines sent to your inbox!
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
Leave Comments
What's New
Get NBCDFW on Mobile!
Get NBCDFW's free news and weather... Read more
Follow Us
Sign up to receive news and updates that matter to you.
Send Us Your Story Tips
Check Out