Federal Prison Term Handed Down to San Antonio Texas Mexican Mafia Member
|U.S. Attorney’s Office November 18, 2011|
United States Attorney Robert Pitman announced that in Del Rio, 34-year-old Valdomero Hernandez, Jr., was sentenced to 300 months in federal prison followed by five years of supervised release for conspiracy to violate the Racketeering Influenced Corrupt Organization (RICO) statute.
The conspiracy alleged that Hernandez and others agreed to conduct the affairs of the Texas Mexican Mafia in the Uvalde, Eagle Pass and Del Rio areas through a pattern of racketeering acts. This included murder, solicitation of murder, drug trafficking and extortion. The extortion took the form of coercive collection of a ten percent drug tax, also known as “the dime,” from drug distributors known to the members of the criminal enterprise. Collection was enforced by robbery, serious bodily injury, or other acts of violence, including the murders of Christopher Mendez in Concan, Texas, on December 6, 2006, and Jose Damian Garza in Hondo, Texas, on July 19, 2008.
Hernandez appeared before United States District Judge Alia Moses for sentencing yesterday. In addition to the prison term, Judge Moses ordered that Hernandez pay a $7,500 fine. In July 2010, Hernandez pleaded guilty to the conspiracy charge.
Hernandez is the ninth defendant in this case to be sentenced. In July, a federal jury convicted Javier “Javi” Guerrero, age 23, of Uvalde, and 26-year-old Victor Esquivel of Eagle Pass of conspiracy to violate the RICO statute. Both face up to life in federal prison. Sentencing for Guerrero and Esquivel is scheduled for April 16, 2012.
This case resulted from a joint investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Texas Department of Public Safety – Criminal Investigations Division, with assistance from the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Hondo Police Department, Texas Department of Public Safety – Texas Rangers, Uvalde Police Department and the Uvalde County Sheriff’s Office. This investigation is the first to directly target the gang’s machinery operating along the Texas–Mexico international border in the cities of Eagle Pass, Del Rio, Crystal City, Carrizo Springs, Uvalde, Sabinal and Hondo.