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Member of Knights Templar drug cartel sentenced to 17 years in Atlanta Federal District Court

January 30, 2016  |  Posted by: JammedUp Staff
Member of Knights Templar drug cartel sentenced to 17 years in Atlanta Federal District Court

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A federal judge in Atalanta sentenced a reputed member of the Knights Templar drug cartel to over 17 years in prison for his involvement in a conspiracy to traffic over 400 kilograms of methamphetamine.

Federal prosecutors say Israel Garcia-Villanueva of Guerrero, Mexico headed up a crew in Atlanta that received shipments of methamphetamine and arranged the transportation to cities throughout the southeastern United States including Atlanta, Georgia.

The judge sentenced Villanueva to 17 years and six months in prison with five years of supervised release after he serves his term.

Charges listed in the indictment accused Israel Garcia-Villanueva of trafficking large shipments of methamphetamine into the Atlanta area, on behalf of a criminal group affiliated with the Knights Templar drug cartel in Mexico.

His co-conspirators used various methods to ship methamphetamine from Mexico to the southeastern United States including stashing it in cars with sophisticated, secret electronic traps, car batteries, statue molds and inside the tanks of diesel fuel trucks.

Prosecutors presented evidence in court that showed how Garcia-Villanueva used multiple residential homes as narcotics “stash houses,” to safeguard the shipments of meth including a home in the Lawrenceville, Georgia area.

The cartel also tasked Garcia Villanueva with making certain drug proceeds were sent back to Mexico by either using people who would drive the money south of the border or would wire money to multiple individuals in Mexico.

“Mexican drug cartels ship the majority of dangerous drugs destined for our country and are responsible for much of the violence in Mexico today. This sentencing illustrates how DEA and its law enforcement counterparts will not allow these drug traffickers to wreak havoc on our society,” Daniel R. Salter, the Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Atlanta Field Division said of the sentencing,

“The drug cartel who Garcia-Villanueva worked for shipped massive amounts of methamphetamine in the Atlanta area from Mexico,” said U.S. Attorney John Horn. “Garcia-Villanueva was the point of contact for the criminal organization in the U.S. for the trafficking and distribution of narcotics in this country.”

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