Brothers from South Texas admit to smuggling $300K worth of marijuana

Border Crime

EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) — Brothers Robert and Daniel Chavarria recovered large bundles of marijuana from the banks of the Rio Grande and orchestrated a scheme get to them to Laredo, Texas, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced Monday.

On May 25, 2017, the brothers from El Cenizo loaded the pot onto a black truck at Roberto Chavarria’s home, and Daniel Chavarria attempted to drive the truck to a stash house in neighboring Laredo.

Investigators said authorities had been conducting surveillance and attempted to stop the truck, but Daniel Chavarria led authorities on a chase and managed to get away.

Authorities said they found the vehicle abandoned in the middle of the road with the lights on and still running. They found five large bundles of marijuana weighing 169.5 kilograms with an estimated street value of $299,200.

Authorities eventually identified and located the brothers and took them into custody.

The brothers have admitted to organizing the smuggling of the marijuana, U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick announced Monday. Roberto Chavarria, 38, pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute marijuana on Monday. Daniel Chavarria, 35, entered his plea on Dec. 1, 2020.

The brothers face a minimum of five years in federal prison and a possible $5 million maximum fine. U.S. District Judge Diana Saldana will impose sentencing at a date still to be determined.

The Drug Enforcement Administration investigated with the assistance of the Webb County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Makens is prosecuting the case, according to a news release.

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