WACO (October 28, 2011)--Three people were sentenced in Waco's federal court Friday to prison time after they earlier pleaded guilty to drug charges.
Arthur Ramirez was sentenced to 124 months in federal prison to be followed by three years supervised release, ordered to pay a $1,000 fine and $100 in special assessments to the court.
Ernest Alcozer was sentenced to 110 months in federal prison to be followed by three years supervised release, ordered to pay a $1,000 fine and $100 in special assessments to the court.
Florence Monroe Lopez was sentenced to 168 months in federal prison to be followed by three years supervised release, ordered to pay a $1,000 fine and $100 in special assessments to the court.
Ramirez, Alcozer and Lopez earlier admitted they participated in a scheme to possess and distribute a large quantity of methamphetamine in parts of Central Texas.
Manuel Salinas, Roland Tapia, Raymond Anthony Lopez and Richard Ramos also were named as part of the conspiracy.
Tapia was sentenced in July to 324 months in federal prison to be followed by five years supervised release, ordered to pay a $5,000 fine and $100 in special assessment to the court.
Salinas has pleaded guilty and his sentencing is set for Nov. 3.
Raymond Anthony Lopez and Ramos have been found guilty after trial of their involvement and are awaiting sentencing on Nov. 16.
Evidence presented at the earlier trial showed the group was part of a drug gang known as the Gardena 13 in California that has ties to the Mexican Mafia.
Government prosecutors say in July 2008 Salinas and Tapia, of Temple, were members of Gardena 13 Street Gang and they began supplying Ramirez with large quantities of methamphetamine while Ramirez was still living in Temple.
Prosecutors say Ramirez would pay Tapia $19,200-a-pound for the drug and continued to do so until January 2011.
A judicially authorized wire tap conducted by the Los Angeles Gang Homicide Task Force intercepted Tapia and Ramirez discussing some of these methamphetamine transactions over telephones.
Ramirez allegedly partnered with Salinas to obtain some of the methamphetamine from Tapia when they were neighbors at a duplex in Temple.
Prosecutors say Salinas also supplied the drug to Alcozer and Lopez during the same time frame.
On April 20, a search warrant was executed at the Salinas residence in Temple and agents recovered more than 500 grams of methamphetamine that tested more than 90 percent pure.
Evidence also indicates Salinas' residence was within 1000 feet of the property comprising a public playground at Colquitt Park in Temple.