MCALLEN, Texas - A Mexican man was convicted on Wednesday of smuggling methamphetamine, and misusing a U.S. citizen passport during his smuggling attempt. The conviction was announced by U.S. Attorney José Angel Moreno, Southern District of Texas. The investigation was conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigation (HSI) in conjunction with U.S Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the U.S. Department of State.
Ramiro Ramirez-Macias, 30, pleaded guilty on July 6 before Chief U.S. District Judge Ricardo H. Hinojosa.
According to court to documents, Ramirez-Macias obtained a U.S. birth certificate, passport and driver's license in another person's name. But a fingerprint database check at the Port of Entry identified him as Ramiro Ramirez-Macias, a Mexican citizen.
Ramirez-Macias admitted that on March 16 he drove a vehicle from Mexico into the U.S. through the Anzalduas Port of Entry. He presented a U.S. passport in the name of another person to a CBP officer. A vehicle search in secondary inspection resulted in discovering nine bundles of methamphetamine weighing more than two kilograms (4.4 pounds) concealed in the vehicle. He was arrested following the discovery. Ramirez-Macias also admitted in court that he had been hired to smuggle the methamphetamine into the U.S. from Mexico to deliver it to an unidentified person.
Ramirez-Macias has been in custody without bond since his arrest. Judge Hinojosa has set sentencing for Oct. 25. Ramirez-Macias faces up to life in federal prison with no parole and a $10 million fine.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Sully, Southern District of Texas, is prosecuting the case.