Mexican couple sentenced to prison for ammunition smuggling
MCALLEN, TX — Mexican nationals Gregorio Rodriguez-Aranda, 25, and Maria Luisa Sanchez-Lopez, 24, have been sentenced following their convictions relating to the exportation of 707 rounds of 7.62mm ammunition and 98 AK-47 magazines, announced United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson. Both pleaded guilty Nov. 25, 2013.
U.S. District Judge Micaela Alvarez sentenced Rodriguez and Sanchez to 57 and 46 months imprisonment, respectively. The court enhanced the sentences because the couple used their five-year-old child to further the offense by traveling as a family unit and thereby concealing the true unlawful purpose of the trip. Additionally, Judge Alvarez noted that Rodriguez and Sanchez, in committing this offense, have contributed to the violence in Mexico that cause so many flee to the United States.
Rodriguez and Sanchez have been in custody since their arrest where they will remain pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.
The case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations and Customs and Border Protection. Assistant United States Attorneys Kristen J. Rees is prosecuting.