Mexican man guilty after car battery reveals cocaine

McALLEN, Texas – A 22-year-old resident of Tamaulipas, Mexico, has pleaded guilty to importing cocaine, announced U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani.

Felipe Abad Medina-Rubio admitted he attempted to smuggle approximately four kilograms of cocaine into the United States through the Hidalgo port of entry.

On Dec. 2. 2022, he arrived at the checkpoint, at which time he stated he had no illegal drugs in his vehicle. Authorities referred him to secondary inspection where a K-9 alerted to the odor of narcotics near the battery of his vehicle. An X-ray examination revealed several anomalies which resulted in the discovery of four bricks of cocaine weighing approximately four kilograms. It had an estimated street value of $16,000.

At his plea today, he admitted he expected to be paid $2,000 to smuggle the cocaine into the united states.

U.S. District Judge Ricardo Hinojosa will impose sentencing Aug. 17. At that time, he faces up to 40 years in prison and a possible $5 million fine.

Medina has been and will remain in custody pending that hearing.

Customs and Border Protection and Homeland Security Investigations conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Theodore Parran III prosecuted the case.

Updated May 15, 2023

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