Robstown-based heroin leader heads to federal prison
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – The leader of a massive heroin and money laundering conspiracy has been ordered to federal prison, announced Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent in Charge Will Glaspy, Houston Division and U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick. Jesus Gutierrez, 46, of Corpus Christi, pleaded guilty April 26, 2018, to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than one kilogram of heroin and conspiracy to launder money.
Today, U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos sentenced him to 84 months in prison.
At the time of his plea, the court learned that he had been part of a significant, long-term heroin distribution ring operating in Robstown. Evidence also showed that on Oct. 4, 2017, authorities seized approximately a kilogram of heroin and almost $100,000 during the arrests related to this investigation.
Gutierrez and his nephew, Enrique Gutierrez Jr., regularly obtained kilogram quantities of heroin during the conspiracy that was then distributed via the other defendants. The overall scope of the conspiracy was estimated to be between 10-30 kilograms of heroin. The conspiracy operated between April 2016 and October 2017.
On May 9, 2018, Judge Ramos sentenced Enrique Gutierrez Jr., 31, of Sandia, to 13 years imprisonment. He had previously pleaded guilty to the same heroin conspiracy as well as conspiracy to launder money.
Also previously sentenced were Sakhone Chanrattana, 35, of Jarrell, who was ordered to serve 97 months, and Tim Molina, 34, of Robstown, who received a sentence of 18 months.
In assessing the sentences, Judge Ramos pointed to the large amount of heroin distributed in this conspiracy and its devastating impact on the community and families.
The Drug Enforcement Administration and the Texas Department of Public Safety conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jon Muschenheim is prosecuting the case.