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West Texas man sentenced to 71 months in federal prison for transporting 112 kilograms of marijuana

Defendant arrested during a traffic violation near Abilene, Texas

LUBBOCK, Texas – A west Texas man was sentenced Friday to 71 months in federal prison for possession with intent to distribute 100 kilograms or more of marijuana, announced U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña of the Northern District of Texas.

This case was investigated by the Texas Department of Public Service, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Brian Julian Gallardo, 22, of Sherman, Texas, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Sam R. Cummings following his guilty plea in December 2012. Gallardo's co-defendant in the case, Mark Dean Garrison, 48, of Denison, Texas, was sentenced March 15 to 46 months in federal prison after he pleaded guilty to the same offense.

According to documents filed in the case, in late October 2012, a trooper with the Texas Department of Public Safety stopped a pickup truck, owned and driven by Garrison, for a traffic violation on Interstate Highway 20 near Abilene, Texas. Gallardo was the only passenger in the truck, which was carrying several spools of barbed wire. After Garrison consented to a search of the truck, one of the troopers opened the inside of one of the spools of wire and detected the odor of marijuana. Further investigation revealed that the spools of wire contained 229 bricks of marijuana that weighed about 112 kilograms (247 pounds). Both Garrison and Gallardo were arrested and have been in custody since that time.

Deputy Criminal Chief Assistant U.S. Attorney Denise Williams, Northern District of Texas, prosecuted this case.