Alton man caught with $500K in cocaine sentenced to 10 years in prison

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A 27-year-old Alton man has been sentenced to a decade in prison after being caught by the Nueces County Interdiction Task Force with more than 40 pounds of cocaine last summer in Bishop, court records indicate.

Jesus Roberto Reyes-Gutierrez, who pleaded guilty to selling, distributing or dispensing a controlled substance on April 6, received his sentence Wednesday.

In exchange for his plea, federal prosecutors moved to dismiss a conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance, which U.S. District Judge Randy Crane granted.

The task force arrested Reyes on July 6, 2022, while he was driving a black Jeep Grand Cherokee on Highway 77 after he disregarded “an official traffic control device” and improperly drove in the left lane without passing, according to a criminal complaint.

That document said Reyes granted police permission to search the vehicle, which is where they found about 44 pounds of packaged cocaine inside a hidden compartment.

In a news release announcing the sentencing, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Texas said the drugs had an estimated street value of $500,000.

The complaint said that Reyes admitted to taking the vehicle from Alton into Mexico where the drugs were loaded before traveling back into the country through Mission.

The news release also noted that Reyes had a prior criminal record.