Sacramento Man Pleads Guilty to Heroin Conspiracy
FRESNO, Calif. — Juan Medina, 29, of Sacramento, pleaded guilty today to conspiring to distribute heroin, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert and Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent in Charge Brian M. Clark announced.
According to court documents, in July 2015, Medina, a truck driver acting at the direction of a Mexican drug source of supply, went to Garden Grove and received $9,800 for a prior delivery of heroin orchestrated by the Mexican source.
Medina is the third courier in this case to enter a guilty plea. Roberto Palacios-Garcia, 37, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to seven years and three months in prison. Daniel Quiroz, 41, of Los Angeles, is scheduled for sentencing on July 10, 2023.
Charges are pending against a fourth defendant, Otoniel Cardenas-Torres, 33. Cardenas-Torres is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
This case is the product of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration. Assistant U.S. Attorney Karen Escobar is prosecuting the case.
Medina is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Jennifer L. Thurston on Sept. 5, 2023. Medina faces a maximum statutory penalty of 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.
This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at www.justice.gov/OCDETF.