MIDLAND A 41-year-old man convicted on charges relating to being a Barrio Azteca gang member was sentenced to life in federal prison on federal drug and racketeering charges.
Feb. 22, a federal jury convicted Carlos Hernandez of one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine as well as marijuana; one count of violating the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO) statute; and, one count of conspiracy to violate the RICO statute.
U.S. District Judge Robert Junell on Wednesday sentenced Hernandez to life imprisonment on the drug charge, plus 27 years in prison on each the RICO charges to run concurrent.
Testimony during the trial of Hernandez and his co-defendants in February 2012 revealed that since January 2006, the defendants conspired to carry out the mission of the BA criminal organization through a pattern of smuggling and distributing cocaine and marijuana, robbery, extortion, as well as violence and intimidation in and around the Midland-Odessa area. In addition to drug distribution, the racketeering activity included a series of home invasion robberies in the Midland area.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys John Klassen and Mark Roomberg prosecuted this case on behalf of the Government.
Santos Almanza: Life in prison.
Miguel Nieto Ramon Morales: 20 years in prison, 10 years supervised release.
San Juan Barboza-Rodriguez: 6 years, 7 months; 5 years supervised release.
Juan Cortez: 5 years to run consecutively with another federal conviction; 3 years supervised release.
Stephen Corona: 5 years in prison, 3 years supervised release.
Venessa Rico Flores: 4 years, 9 months to run consecutive with state conviction; 5 years supervised release.
Frederico Duran: 2 years, 9 months to run consecutive with another federal conviction; 5 years supervised relase.
Christopher Gilbertson: sentencing scheduled for 10 a.m. today Thursday.