ATF

Sample Block


Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

District of Arizona

www.justice.gov/usao/az

For Immediate Release

Monday, February 13, 2012

Ann Birmingham Scheel, United States Attorney

Contact: Bill Solomon
(602) 514-7547
william.solomon@usdoj.gov

Mexican National Pleads Guilty to Aiding and Abetting the Use of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Offense

PHOENIX — On Feb.8, 2012, Octavio Rivera–Mendez, 36, a Mexican national, pleaded guilty to Aid and Abet Use of Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Offense in federal district court in Phoenix. Sentencing is set for April 23, 2012.

According to Rivera–Mendez’s plea agreement, beginning on or about Nov. 11, 2011, he and two other individuals were part of a rip crew that conspired and schemed to possess and distribute marijuana by robbing it from other drug couriers traveling in and around the Vekol Valley. The individuals involved in the scheme knowingly possessed a Smith and Wesson 38 Special Revolver to further the federal drug trafficking crime.

A conviction for Aid and Abet Use of Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Offense carries a minimum penalty of 5 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, or both. In determining an actual sentence, Judge Susan R. Bolton will consult the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide appropriate sentencing ranges. The judge, however, is not bound by those guidelines in determining a sentence.

The investigation was conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The prosecution is being handled by Robert K. Lu, Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona.

CASE NUMBER: CR–11–02276–002–SRB

RELEASE NUMBER: 2012–031(Rivera–Mendez)

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