Two imprisoned for drug conspiracy involving high speed chase
LAREDO, TX – Two Laredo men have been ordered to federal prison after their involvement in a drug trafficking event, announced Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent in Charge Steven S. Whipple and U.S. Attorney Ryan Patrick.
Raul Gomez, 36, and Enrique Gonzalez, 39, pled guilty on August 6, 2019.
Today, U.S. District Judge Marina Garcia Marmolejo ordered Gomez to serve 87 months in federal prison. At the hearing, the court noted he had prior convictions for burglary, assault, possession of a controlled substance and being a felon in possession of a firearm. In handing down the sentence, Judge Marmolejo explained that during the commission of the instant offense, Gomez could have killed someone during the high speed chase or been killed himself.
Gonzalez was previously ordered to serve 12 months and one day in prison. Gomez and Gonzalez will serve five and four years of supervised release following their prison terms, respectively.
The investigation revealed a drug trafficking organization would be attempting to transport marijuana. On May 29, 2019, authorities established surveillance in the vicinity of Sereno Drive in Laredo, during which time they observed two vehicles leaving a residence in tandem.
Gomez was driving one of them - a red SUV - which appeared to be weighed down in the rear with items stacked high in the rear seat. Law enforcement attempted to conduct a traffic stop, but he fled at a high rate of speed. The chase continued through Bob Bullock Loop and Mines Road, eventually resulting in a crash. Gomez attempted to flee on foot, but authorities were able to soon apprehend him.
At the time of his arrest, law enforcement discovered d a total of 347 kilograms of marijuana in the back of his vehicle.
Simultaneously, other authorities had conducted a traffic stop on the other vehicle that left the residence on Sereno Drive. They arrested Gonzalez – the driver – who later admitted he had been paid to store the drugs at his home.
Gomez will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future. Gonzalez was permitted to remain on bond and voluntarily surrender to a BOP facility to be determined in the near future.
The Drug Enforcement Administration conducted the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force investigation dubbed Operation The World Is Yours. Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Dos Santos prosecuted the case.