CORPUS CHRISTI–A prison gang member from Corpus Christi was sentenced by a federal judte to life in prison after his conviction for drug trafficking and conspiracy that involved gang leadership both inside and outside of the Texas prison system.
Orlando Garcia, 33, a known Raza Unida gang member, was convicted in February by a federal jury and is the final defendant to be found guilty in a seven-count indictment that involved 13 other defendants.
During the trial, the jury heard testimony that Garcia acted as an intermediary between drug traffickers in Arkansas and Karlos Bouchot, a ranking Raza Unida member who was in prison at the time of the conspiracy.
Jurors heard recordings made pursuant to a court-ordered interception of phone calls that Bouchot made to Garcia while in prison.
In these phone calls, Garcia stated he had arranged for six pounds of methamphetamine to be purchased in Arkansas.The buyers of the methamphetamine were to pay more than $20,000 per pound of methamphetamine.
Garcia and Bouchot agreed they, as well as the gang itself, stood to make thousands of dollars in profit from this one deal alone.
Jurors also heard Garcia state that he was dealing methamphetamine he received from gang members in Corpus Christi.
The jury also heard that the agents with Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) later discovered this cache of methamphetamine at a stash house in Corpus Christi. The methamphetamine was more than 90 percent pure and weighed more than 12 pounds.
Garcia and another defendant, Johnny Joe Guerra, searched the stash house after federal agents raided it. Guerra, a Raza Unida leader, pleaded guilty and was also sentenced to life in federal prison for his involvement in the conspiracy.