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A Guatemalan man surnamed Reyes-Villagran, 37, was sentenced to federal prison for drug trafficking violations in the Eastern District of Texas,
 announced Acting U.S. Attorney Nicholas J. Ganjei. - Illustrative photo -

Published Thursday, June 10, 2021

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A Guatemalan man surnamed Reyes-Villagran, 37, was sentenced to federal prison for drug trafficking violations in the Eastern District of Texas, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Nicholas J. Ganjei.

According to information presented in court, Villagran, a resident and national of Guatemala, was a member of a drug trafficking organization responsible for multi-ton cocaine shipments which originated from Colombia.

The drugs were then shipped to Costa Rica, Guatemala, and Mexico for further distribution to the United States. Airplanes, go-fast boats, semi-tractor trailer trucks, and passenger vehicles were used to transport most of the cocaine shipments.
Villagran was involved with coordinating airplanes used to transport cocaine shipments departing from Colombia and Venezuela to arrive at his clandestine landing strips in Guatemala.

Once there, he distributed cocaine in bulk to his customers in Guatemala and Mexico. A federal grand jury returned an indictment charging Villagran with federal drug trafficking violations on August 8, 2018, according to the Department of Justice.

Villagran pleaded guilty on Sept. 1, 2020, for conspiracy to import cocaine into the United States. He also pleaded guilty to manufacturing, distributing, and importing cocaine into the United States. This week, U.S. District Judge Sean D. Jordan sentenced Villagran to 292 months in federal prison.

“Despite the sophisticated network of land, sea, and air smuggling routes, it wasn’t enough to conceal the criminal activities of Mr. Villagran and his associates from American investigators and our overseas law enforcement allies,” Ganjei said. “The long arm of the American justice system extends even overseas, and brings international drug traffickers and their conspirators to our shores to face justice in American courts.”

This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces, OCDETF, operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, and multi-agency approach.
This case was investigated by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Colleen Bloss.

What should the U.S. authorities do to stop drug trafficking? We would like to know your thoughts on this story. Send your comments to

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