August 30, 2016
Contact: Wendell Campbell
Phone Number: (713) 693-3000
Permanent Resident In Mission Heads To Federal Prison For Meth And Marijuana Smuggling
MCALLEN, Texas - A Mexican national and lawful permanent resident from Mission has been ordered to federal prison following his convictions of conspiring to possess with the intent to distribute marijuana and methamphetamine, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson and Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent in Charge Joseph M. Arabit, Houston Division. Felipe Rivera-Paredes, 55, pleaded guilty March 31, 2016.
U.S. District Judge Micaela Alvarez sentenced Rivera-Paredes to 210 months in custody on both counts to run concurrently. He is expected to face deportation proceedings following his release from prison. As part of the sentence, Judge Alvarez found Rivera-Paredes was a leader-organizer of a drug trafficking group of five or more people.
Rivera-Paredes was arrested Oct. 22, 2015, after negotiating the sale of approximately 485 grams of methamphetamine with an undercover agent.
He initially began communicating with the agent in July 2014 and soon began discussions regarding marijuana smuggling. He coordinated the transportation of marijuana on multiple occasions from September to October 2014. Each of those instances resulted in the arrest of the individuals who later took possession of the marijuana. In total, Rivera-Paredes turned over approximately 842 total kilograms of marijuana.
He also negotiated the sale of 485 grams of methamphetamine with an undercover agent in September 2015, culminating in his arrest. Rivera-Paredes remains in custody pending his transfer to the Bureau of Prisons.
Homeland Security Investigations and the Drug Enforcement Administration conducted the joint investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Leonard is prosecuting the case.