Drug related violence has claimed the life of yet another Northern Mexican Mayor. Last Saturday, Rito Grado Serrano, the Mayor of Praxedis Guerrero, and his son were murdered by unidentified gunmen in their home – presumably men associated with Mexican drug cartels. Mr. Serrano’s death marks the 12th Mexican Mayoral death this calendar year, and the violence has shocked this small town, which sits just across the border from El Paso.
If you’ve been accused of a federal drug crime in West Texas recently, you are not alone. 2010 has seen a veritable explosion in drug related mayhem on both sides of the border. For instance, Ciudad Juarez, a town right across from El Paso on the Mexican side, has reported 500 killings likely related to the drug trade in just the past two months alone. Last month, Mexican authorities found 72 bodies at a ranch in San Fernando – again, right across from Texas – also the result of drug related violence. Violent actions and counter-reactions among Mexican cartels have ratcheted up the stakes in the Mexican drug war, and most analysts have no idea how or when the ongoing violence will be contained.
If you’ve been hit with federal drug charges stemming from an arrest at the West Texas border (near El Paso or elsewhere), prosecutors can seek serious jail time, fines, and other punishments. And if you participated in a criminal conspiracy with others charged with federal drug crimes, you could face criminal penalties for wrongdoings your conspirators committed – even if you had nothing to do with their actions.
Given the stakes for you and your future, and given all of the complexities and nuances of the federal drug laws, it behooves you to retain a competent, resourceful, and experienced Board Certified criminal defense attorney to develop a plan of action. The counsel you choose matters. A smart and experienced attorney — someone who understands how West Texas and federal criminal prosecutors operate — can help you develop a realistic approach to respond to the charges and get your life back on track.