SHREVEPORT, La. – Acting U.S.Attorney Alexander C. Van Hook announced today that a federal jury found a Texas man guilty of conspiring to transport methamphetamine and cocaine.
Erasmo Aviles Jr., 35, of Spring, Texas, was found guilty of one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance, one count of possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute and one count of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute a controlled substance. United States District Judge S. Maurice Hicks Jr. presided over the trial, which started Monday and ended today. The jury returned a guilty verdict after deliberating for approximately 2.75 hours.
Evidence admitted at trial revealed that Aviles was traveling east on Interstate 20 in Bossier Parish in one car that was traveling in tandem with another vehicle driven by Francisco Guardiola, 25, of Spring, Texas, on May 12, 2016. Louisiana State Troopers conducted a traffic stop on the vehicles. Aviles denied any wrongdoing and a search of his vehicle produced a camouflaged two-way radio set to channel two. The vehicle Guardiola was driving was searched. Troopers found 1,048 gross grams of methamphetamine and 361.8 grams of powder cocaine. They also found a camouflaged two-way radio of the same type found in Aviles’ vehicle that was also set to channel two.
Aviles faces up to 20 years to life in prison, 10 years of supervised release and a $20 million fine for the conspiracy count; up to 20 years in prison, five years of supervised release and a $10 million fine for the methamphetamine and cocaine distribution counts. Guardiola pleaded guilty on March 15, 2017 to all three counts.
The DEA and Louisiana State Police conducted the investigation.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Allison D. Bushnell and Tennille M. Gilreath are prosecuting the case.
Department of Justice
Office of the U.S. Attorney
Western District of Louisiana