Detail Emerge Over Gulf Cartel Ties to the Valley

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WESLACO – The man accused of heading the Gulf Cartel for the better part of a decade will be sentenced to at least 10 years in prison following his guilty plea.

Jorge Costilla-Sanchez helped move thousands of kilograms of cocaine and marijuana into the United States, according to Department of Justice.

Prosecutors said much of it came through Hidalgo and Cameron counties, and by sea, landing on Padre Island.

Profits were returned to Mexico through money laundering methods, said prosecutors.

He admitted being involved in an incident where two U.S. federal agents were held at gunpoint in Mexico.

"Cardenas called out on a two-way radio to his security team and ordered them to stop the agents," said a statement by the Department of Justice. "Several Cartel del Golfo members also pointed AK-47s at the agents who felt in fear of losing their lives."

Costilla-Sanchez plead guilty Tuesday in a Brownsville federal court. He admitted joining a conspiracy to distribute cocaine and marijuana, as well as assaulting a federal officer.

He faces a mandatory 10 years in prison and could receive as high as a life sentence.

Costilla-Sanchez is scheduled for sentencing on January 4, 2018.


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