Former Captain of Texas Mexican Mafia Sentenced for Narcotics Trafficking
MCALLEN, TX—An Edinburg man has been ordered to federal prison following his conviction of possession with intent to distribute more than one kilogram of Heroin, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson. Jesus Rodriguez Barrientes, 49, pleaded guilty Sept. 5, 2012. Also sentenced today were Elizabeth Michele Barrientes, 40, of Edinburg, and Fermin Martinez-Luna, 43, of Reynosa, Tamaulipas, Mexico.
Today, Chief U.S. District Judge Ricardo H. Hinojosa ordered Jesus Barrientes serve a total of 262 months in federal prison to be immediately followed by five years of supervised release. At the hearing, additional testimony was presented showing that Barrientes directed at least five other subjects to assist with his drug trafficking activities and that some of the heroin purchases were performed at his residence. Evidence also showed he had an extensive criminal record and that he has been a member of the Texas Mexican Mafia for a significant amount of time.
Previous evidence presented to the court proved Rodriguez Barrientes was head of the Texas Mexican Mafia in the Rio Grande Valley and would supply heroin to other members in Texas.
At the time of his plea, Rodriguez Barrientes admitted he planned to receive two kilograms of heroin from a source of supply from Mexico. Martinez-Luna smuggled the heroin from Mexico to the United States and delivered it to a confidential informant. This heroin was to be delivered to Jesus Barrientes later that day.
Martinez-Luna previously pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute more than one kilogram of Heroin. He was also sentenced today to a 46-month-term of imprisonment.
Elizabeth Barrientes had pleaded guilty to misprision of felony and received a sentence today of two years’ probation. At the time of the offense, she was married to Jesus Barrientes and admitted to knowing of her husband’s gang affiliation and his narcotics trafficking activities. Evidence at the time of her plea showed that on one occasion she was present when her husband sold five ounces of heroin to an FBI confidential informant. She concealed the proceeds of the sale in order to prevent law enforcement from detecting the criminal transaction.
Jesus Barrientes and Martinez-Luna have been in custody since their arrest in August 2011 where they will remain pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.
This prosecution was part of an investigation conducted FBI and the Texas Department of Public Safety. Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Wells Jr. prosecuted the case.