September 01, 2016
Contact: Erica C. Curry
Phone Number: (602) 664-5600
Busted Behind Bars: Drug Case Leads Feds To Prison Dealer
Arizona man convicted of running drug operations while incarcerated
PHOENIX - The DEA announced the recent conviction of Luis Alfonso Felix-Hernandez, an already incarcerated subject who was found guilty of multiple federal charges after it was discovered he was continuing his drug trafficking operations from within prison walls. Information provided to federal agents by Mesa Police Department detectives indicated Luis Felix-Hernandez had obtained a cell phone to direct his drug trafficking organization while imprisoned for drug trafficking charges stemming from a previous DEA investigation. DEA worked jointly with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security (HSI).
“This investigation clearly demonstrates the extraordinary lengths criminals go through to continue their illicit activities and profit from victimizing our communities,” said Doug Coleman, Special Agent in Charge, DEA Phoenix Division. “DEA and our law enforcement friends at all levels will never relent in our quest to protect our neighborhoods from the scourge of drug abuse and addiction.”
DEA and HSI special agents developed information provided by Mesa PD Detectives of Felix-Hernandez’s continued drug trafficking from within prison confines. Combining resources and investigative efforts, the agencies further confirmed his brother, Josue Benjamin Felix-Hernandez as a co-conspirator. The case resulted in the indictment of the brothers by a federal grand jury earlier this year.
“HSI’s collaboration with our federal and local law enforcement partners continues to thrive in Arizona,” said Bradford A. Bench, interim special agent in charge of HSI Phoenix. “Drug traffickers that seek to bypass law enforcement, especially while behind bars are not tolerated. One by one, we continue to work together to seek out and dismantle these criminal organizations.”
"The recent conviction of Luis Felix-Hernandez serves as a great example of the investigative reach that comes from cooperation and partnership between law enforcement agencies. I am proud of the officers and detectives of the Mesa Police Department who, along with the joint Drug Enforcement Administration and Homeland Security Investigations, spent countless hours and were tenacious in their determination to have a successful investigation and subsequent conviction," stated Assistant Chief Michael Dvorak.
The Felix-Hernandez brothers were responsible for trafficking pound-quantities of methamphetamine throughout Arizona. This joint investigation resulted in the seizure of 13 pounds of methamphetamine, one pound of cocaine and one handgun. Josue Felix-Hernandez pleaded guilty for his role in the methamphetamine trafficking organization and was sentenced earlier this year to six years’ imprisonment. Luis Felix-Hernandez faces a statutory minimum of 20 years’ imprisonment [21 U.S.C. Section 841(b)(1)(A)].
This investigation was led by DEA, HSI and the Mesa PD Narcotics Unit and was supported by the Arizona Department of Corrections, and the Phoenix Police Department. This investigation was prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Arizona.