El Paso Man Sentenced to Federal Prison for Trafficking Meth and Assaulting Co-Defendant
EL PASO - A federal judge in El Paso sentenced 53-year-old Gerardo Paz to 190 months of imprisonment followed by five years of supervised release for methamphetamine trafficking and assaulting his co-defendant while in custody, announced U.S. Attorney Ashley C. Hoff; FBI Special Agent in Charge Luis Quesada, El Paso Division; and Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Special Agent in Charge Kyle Williamson, El Paso Field Office.
“Methamphetamine destroys lives and ruins families. Those that peddle this dangerous, illegal drug in our communities should know that profiteering from death and destruction will not be tolerated. Today’s 190-month sentence should serve as a warning to those that choose to bring this poison into the El Paso community,” said U.S. Attorney Hoff.
On January 2, 2020, Paz pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than five kilograms of methamphetamine. According to court records, on June 20, 2019, federal agents witnessed Paz transport and deliver approximately eight kilograms of methamphetamine to the El Paso residence of his co-defendant, Francisco Contreras. On January 4, 2020, Paz confronted and physically assaulted Contreras in the detention holding facility’s visitation area.
On January 15, 2020, U.S. District Judge Kathleen Cardone sentenced Contreras to 30 months in federal prison followed by five years of supervised release. Contreras earlier pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than five kilograms of methamphetamine.
“With this conviction, FBI and our law enforcement partners are working together to have a positive impact at the local level,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Quesada. “We are sending a strong and unified message that drug trafficking will not be tolerated, and, in turn, we are keeping our communities safer and free from methamphetamine which continues to cause horrific damage in too many of our communities.”
“The sentencing of Gerardo Paz exemplifies DEA’s relentless commitment to keep dangerous drugs and those who traffic them off of our streets,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Williamson. “DEA, along with our federal and local law enforcement partners, will continue to focus on these drug trafficking organizations that try and spread this kind of poison in our communities.”
These sentences resulted from an investigation by the FBI/DEA Strike Force. The Strike Force is a multi-agency task force established to disrupt and dismantle major drug trafficking organizations. The El Paso Police Department, U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the U.S. Border Patrol assisted with this investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Kyle Myers prosecuted this case.