tyler — United States Attorney John M. Bales announced today that Jose Lopez, a 42 year old Tyler, Texas man, pleaded guilty to the charge of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime during a hearing before United States Magistrate John D. Love.
Lopez was indicted along with two co-defendants by a federal grand jury on January 11, 2012. According to information presented in court, from a date prior to December 14, 2011, and continuing through that date, Lopez possessed and distributed methamphetamine with his co-defendants. Lopez also admitted to possessing and carrying a firearm during and in relation to the possession and distribution of methamphetamine. Lopez admitted that he conspired with his co-defendants to distribute more than 500 grams but less than 1.5 kilograms of methamphetamine.
Lopez faces not less than 10 years in prison, a fine not to exceed $10,000,000.00 and at least 5 years of supervised release on the drug charge. He also faces not less than 5 years in prison, a fine not to exceed $250,000.00 and no more than 5 years of supervised release on the gun charge, to be served consecutively to the drug charge.
When Lopez was arrested, he was in possession of a firearm and 1.6 pounds of pure methamphetamine. Lopez has also agreed to forfeit all firearms and $50,000 as part of his plea.
This case is being investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Smith County Sheriff’s Office and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Bill Baldwin.