MCALLEN, TX—Humberto Lopez-Cuevas, 27, a Mexican national illegally in the United States, has been handed a federal prison sentence for being a prohibited person in possession of firearms and silencers, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today. Lopez-Cuevas pleaded guilty June 1, 2012.
Today, Chief U.S. District Judge Ricardo H. Hinojosa sentenced Lopez-Cuevas to a total of 78 months’ imprisonment. At the hearing, additional evidence was presented including that marijuana, a scale, body armor, and ski masks were also found in the car along with identification cards from two persons who were the subject of a home invasion the preceding day. In handing down the sentence, Judge Hinojosa noted he believed the firearms and silencer were possessed in connection with the commission of another felony offense. As an illegal alien, Lopez-Cuevas is expected to face deportation proceedings following completion of his prison term.
The evidence indicated that on January 23, 2012, the Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office was conducting surveillance on a residence when they witnessed Lopez-Cuevas departing the location as a passenger in a Chevy Suburban. Deputies attempted a traffic stop, but the driver accelerated, at which time a high-speed pursuit ensued. With the assistance of the Alamo and San Juan Police Departments, officers were eventually able to pull over the vehicle. Lopez-Cuevas, who provided a false name, and the driver were detained. Officers conducted a search of the Suburban and found the firearms and silencer as well as marijuana, digital scales, body armor, ammunition, and ski masks. Also found was an identification card for Lopez-Cuevas, thereby establishing his true Identity.
The driver stated that Lopez-Cuevas ordered him to not stop and flee from law enforcement. It was subsequently discovered that the firearms and silencer belonged to Lopez-Cuevas and that he had placed them in the Suburban.
Lopez-Cuevas has been on detained without bond since the time of his arrest, where he will remain pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.
The investigation was conducted by the FBI; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office; and the San Juan and Alamo Police Departments. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Steven Schammel.