Jorge Monjaraz-Perez pleaded guilty on Thursday to conspiring to transport 1,886 kilograms or about 4,158 pounds of marijuana, according to a press release published by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).
U.S. District Judge Fernando Rodriguez Jr. is scheduled to sentence Monjaraz-Perez on April 19. The DOJ noted that Monjaraz-Perez was bailed out of jail and will remain free until his sentencing.
A grand jury had indicted Monjaraz-Perez on four drug charges. Prosecutors say he told the court that he worked with a drug trafficking organization.
“He also acknowledged running a marijuana stash house in Brownsville and that he participated in at least seven drug trafficking events,” the DOJ stated in its press release. “Law enforcement seized all the marijuana, each ranging between 91 kilograms and 528 kilograms.”
That translates to approximately 200 to 1164 pounds of narcotics.
According to a criminal complaint, in June of last year, Brownsville border patrol agents noticed a group of people running north across U.S. Highway 281 near a resort. As officers were searching the area, they witnessed one individual flee into a sorghum field. He was arrested with one bundle of marijuana, the complaint stated.
With the help of police dogs, border guards then found four more people and additional bundles of marijuana. The charging documents named Monjaraz-Perez among those who were arrested during the seizure.
According to statistics provided by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, 319,447 pounds of marijuana was seized by the agency in Fiscal Year 2021. In October and November of last year, the latest month for which data is available, 26,602 pounds of marijuana were confiscated.
A copy of the criminal complaint against Monjaraz-Perez can be found below.
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Hayden Sparks is a senior reporter for The Texan and a lifelong resident of the Lone Star State. He has coached competitive speech and debate and has been involved in politics since a young age. One of Hayden's favorite quotes is by Sam Houston: "Texas has yet to learn submission to any oppression, come from what source it may."