Houston, TX

Houston man faces 20 years for laundering drug proceeds

Marisol Gallagher

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HOUSTON — Acting U.S. Attorney Nicholas J. Ganjei has announced that a Houston man, Roberto Fuentes, has pleaded guilty to federal violations related to drug trafficking in the Eastern District of Texas.

Fuentes, 42, pleaded guilty to a money-laundering conspiracy on Tuesday, May 25, before the U.S. Magistrate Judge Zack Hawthorn.

According to Ganjei, money laundering is a crucial part of hiding evidence of criminal activities, including the distribution of illegal narcotics. By disrupting the drug trafficking industry and disabling drug trafficking organizations from conducting their illicit activities, agencies and local police can help protect people’s health from dangerous, addictive substances.

“I continue to be grateful for the great work and dedication of the DEA and their efforts to combat all aspects of the illegal drug trade,” said Ganjei.

The court heard that Roberto Fuentes was an associate of Ruben Pulido Flores. He also participated in transactions to conceal currency that was the earnings of Flores’ illegal drug trade.

Starting from at least May of 2017, Flores has participated in supervising, managing, and controlling a drug trafficking organization comprised of five people who distributed cocaine as well as other narcotics in the Houston area. The drugs were then redistributed to customers from all over Southeast Texas, Atlanta, and Chicago.

A federal grand jury served the indictment to Fuentes on December 6, 2018. He was charged with federal violations, Fuentes is facing up to 20 years in federal prison.

A sentencing hearing will be scheduled for this case after the U.S. probation officer's investigation is completed.

This case is also currently being investigated by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Rapp.

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