DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Southern District of Alabama

For Immediate Release

Thursday, July 6, 2017
Steve Butler
, United States Attorney
Contact: Eric Day

Mexican Drug Trafficker Sentenced in Federal Court

Acting United States Attorney Steve Butler of the Southern District of Alabama announced that Rafael Tellez-Tijernia, 39, a citizen of Mexico residing in Houston, Texas, was sentenced today in federal court on charges involving his possession with intent to distribute cocaine. Court documents reflect that Tellez-Tijernia and three others were implicated when Mobile County Street Narcotics Enforcement Team (MCSENT) officers entered a residence on Frieda Avenue in Eight Mile to execute a search warrant in July of 2016. They found Rafael Tellez-Tijernia and two others in the kitchen of the residence. Also in the kitchen was approximately two kilograms of cocaine and a firearm. Tellez-Tijernia initially provided the false name of Juan Carlos Rivas-Rodriguez to the officers. He pled guilty to the federal charge in March of 2017.

United States District Court Judge William H. Steele sentenced Tellez-Tijernia to 51 months imprisonment. At the completion of that sentence, he will be delivered to a duly authorized immigration official for deportation. No fine was imposed. The judge ordered that Tellez-Tijernia pay the $100 special mandatory assessment.

The case was investigated by MCSENT and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Assistant United States Attorney Gloria Bedwell prosecuted it in the United States Attorney’s Office.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Alabama at


Nashville Field Division