An Alice resident known as "Cocaine Pepe" has been sentenced to more than 12 years in federal prison.
Jose Francisco Arredondo pleaded guilty on Aug. 19 to possession with intent to distribute 112 grams of methamphetamine.
Arredondo's guilty plea followed an arrest from April 9 when local law enforcement arrived at a hotel in response to a disturbance. Police made contact with Arredondo, a known convicted felon, to ask about the disturbance call. When police made contact they detected an odor of marijuana and saw a firearm in plain view. Authorities then conducted a thorough search of the vehicle, according to a news release.
Officers uncovered more than $11,000, as well as four bags of narcotics, one with 112 grams of meth, two containing a total of 56 grams of cocaine and another with 13 grams of marijuana. Law enforcement also discovered a digital scale, many lottery tickets, and a defaced firearm. At the hearing, the court heard additional evidence that detailed Arredondo’s life of crime and how he terrorized the Alice and Jim Wells County community with 28 arrests and was one of the main sources of meth, cocaine, steroids and more in Alice, the news release states.
In handing down the sentence, U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos noted Arredondo was consistently arrested multiple times with guns and drugs and that previous jail sentences did not seem to dissuade him from criminality.
"We have gone federal on some cases. This is one of several cases we turned over to the federal government to help us with the problems we are having within our community," Alice Police Chief Eden Garcia said. "We want to have an impact in the community. We want to make a change for the betterment of our community. This is a collaboration between APD, Jim Wells County Sheriff's Office and the federal police."
He was sentenced to 12 years and seven months in prison to be immediately followed by five years of supervised release.
Arredondo will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility.