Hebbronville resident admits to smuggling over a million in cocaine

FILE PHOTO: American flag waves outside the U.S. Department of Justice Building in Washington

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – A 63-year-old man has pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute approximately 16 kilograms of cocaine, announced U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani.

On Sept. 7, 2022, Ascencion Garza Jr. drove his truck into the primary inspection lane of a Border patrol (BP) checkpoint located near Falfurrias. There, authorities searched his vehicle and discovered 15 bricks of cocaine in concealed compartments within the rear quarter-panels.

The drugs weighed approximately 16 kilograms and have an estimated street value of more than $1.1 million.

U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzalez Ramos will impose sentencing April 11. At that time, Garza faces up to life in federal prison and a possible $10 million maximum fine.

Garza has been and will remain in custody pending that hearing.

Homeland Security Investigations and Customs and Border Protection conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Tyler Foster is prosecuting the case.