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Mexican national sentenced for selling drugs, guns, fake documents

WICHITA, Kan. - An illegal alien from Mexico was sentenced Monday to more than seven years in federal prison, to be followed by deportation, for selling guns, illegal drugs and counterfeit documents. The sentence resulted from an investigation conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Kansas Bureau of Investigation (KBI).

Esteban Ochoa-Almendariz, 24, who resided in Wichita at the time of his arrest, was sentenced Oct. 3 in U.S. District Court in Wichita. He pleaded guilty to distributing methamphetamine and making false documents. Ochoa-Almendariz was charged in April in a 13-count indictment alleging unlawful sale of drugs, guns and identification documents.

"Mr. Ochoa was a one-stop vendor of drugs, guns and false documents catering mainly to persons unlawfully in the United States," said Barry Grissom, U.S. attorney for the District of Kansas.

The indictment alleged that Ochoa-Almendariz sold a firearm in October 2009 during an investigation by KBI in cooperation with ICE HSI. Agents didn't encounter him again until the summer of 2010 when, over the course of three months, he allegedly sold guns, drugs and fraudulent identity documents to KBI undercover agents. He was arrested in April 2011 after state and federal agents executed a search warrant at Ochoa-Almendariz's Wichita residence in which computers, document-making equipment and a firearm were recovered.

The Wichita Police Department assisted in the investigation. Asst. U.S. Attorney Brent Anderson, District of Kansas, successfully prosecuted the case.