In a development announced by U.S. Attorney Damien M. Diggs, 54-year-old Jorge Elias Golarte of Laredo, Texas and Monterrey, Mexico, entered a guilty plea to federal drug trafficking charges on the day his jury trial was set to commence in the Eastern District of Texas.
Golarte admitted guilt before U.S. District Judge Sean Jordan, confessing to conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute and distribute methamphetamine, cocaine, heroin, and marijuana. The defendant, who is engaged in the shipping business in both Laredo and Monterrey, confessed to his involvement in a drug distribution conspiracy that operated in the Eastern District of Texas and other locations.
As part of the plea agreement, Golarte will forfeit ownership of one of his Margo Logistics tractor-trailers. The defendant, facing a minimum of 10 years in federal prison at sentencing, could receive a sentence determined by the court based on advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors.
The investigation, conducted under the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation, aims to identify, disrupt, and dismantle high-level criminal organizations posing a threat to the United States. Further information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.
The case involves collaborative efforts from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) offices in Laredo and Dallas, the U.S. Border Patrol, the Dallas Police Department, and the Lewisville Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Heather Rattan and Kevin McClendon are prosecuting the case.
A sentencing hearing will be scheduled following the completion of a presentence investigation by the U.S. Probation Office.