Another Defendant Sentenced in East Idaho Drug Trafficking Conspiracy
POCATELLO—Rafael Ignacio Guerrero, 37, a Mexican national, was sentenced today in United States District Court to 42 months in prison for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute in excess of 50 grams of methamphetamine, U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson announced. He will face deportation after serving his sentence. Chief U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill also ordered Guerrero to pay $100 special assessment.
According to plea agreements filed in the case, from June 2005 through January 2012, a group of individuals centered around Samuel Nevarez-Ayon, a Mexican national, entered into a conspiracy to possess and distribute in excess of 50 grams of actual methamphetamine in the Idaho Falls area. In furtherance of the conspiracy, Nevarez-Ayon admitted that he distributed methamphetamine to other individuals on at least three occasions during this same time period. In June 2011, Guerrero delivered two pounds of methamphetamine to Nevarez-Ayon for subsequent distribution. In furtherance of the conspiracy, Nevarez-Ayon directed activities of various co-defendants. In addition to distributing methamphetamine, several defendants laundered proceeds from the sale of the methamphetamine and made false loan application to local banks to further the laundering of money. During the course of the conspiracy, the defendants obtained in excess of $500,000 from the distribution of methamphetamine.
Nevarez-Ayon and seven co-defendants have pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing. One defendant is a fugitive.
Three co-defendants were sentenced in March 2013 for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute in excess of 50 grams of methamphetamine, including Antonio Javier Mendoza, of Shelley, Idaho, to 96 months in prison; Fabiola Esmerelda Marin Castro, to 36 months; and Daniel Quiroz, a Mexican national, to 78 months. Abel Garcia, of Idaho Falls, Idaho, was sentenced in March to one month in prison for making a false statement to a bank.
The charges are the result of a nine-month investigation by the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF), which included the Idaho State Police, Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office, Idaho Falls Police Department, Madison County Sheriff’s Office, Rexburg Police Department, Bingham County Sheriff’s Office, Fremont County Sheriff’s Office, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF). Other federal agencies participating in the OCDETF program include the Drug Enforcement Administration and the U.S. Marshals Service.
The OCDETF program is a federal multi-agency, multi-jurisdictional task force that supplies supplemental federal funding to federal and state agencies involved in the identification, investigation, and prosecution of major drug trafficking organizations.