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For Immediate Release

Contact:
December 03, 2013 Kevin Labrador, Supervisory Deputy U.S. Marshal
Southern District of Texas, Laredo Division (956) 794-1200
Fugitive Arrested, 2,750 Pounds of Marijuana Seized by Task Force Officers

Laredo, TX - The Gulf Coast Violent Offenders and Fugitive Task Force (GCVOFTF) assisted the Texas Department of Public Safety (TX DPS) and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in the investigation and apprehension of Hugo Martinez-Valdez. Information was obtained that Martinez-Valdez was allegedly driving a water tank truck that had 2,000 lbs. of marijuana concealed inside. The information also indicated that the truck was traveling on the Mines Road area in Laredo, TX, moving north thru ranch roads in order to avoid law enforcement officers, specifically the Border Patrol checkpoint located on highway 83.

The truck and fugitive were located in the Galvan road area by law enforcement officers and surveillance was conducted until Texas state troopers intervened and detained the fugitive for traffic violations. When the state troopers confronted Martinez-Valdez, the fugitive provided ambiguous information regarding his travel itinerary and cargo. The truck was taken to the World Trade Bridge Port of Entry in Laredo, TX, and an x-ray scan was conducted showing the presence of multiple bundles stashed inside the water tank. Martinez-Valdez was arrested at the scene pending Federal charges for Possession and Distribution of Marijuana. ICE and TX DPS confirmed that the bundles contained 2,750 lbs. of marijuana with a street value of $550,000.

The GCVOFTF is a team comprised of law enforcement officers from the U.S. Marshals Service, Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office, Starr County Sheriff’s Office, McAllen PD, Mission PD, San Juan PD, Weslaco PD, Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) - Office of Inspector General, Texas Department of Public Safety, Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco & Firearms, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement -  Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Anonymous tips can be made by texting 411TIPS (847411) keyword GULFCOAST or by going to www.usmarshals.gov/district/tx-s/index.html.

Additional information about the U.S. Marshals Service can be found at http://www.usmarshals.gov.

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