Apr 25, 2013 1:40 PM by Ben Lloyd - email@example.com
CORPUS CHRISTI - A Kingsville man who asked for forgiveness in federal court was sentenced to just over 8 years in prison this morning for conspiring to distribute more than 100 kilos of marijuana.
Michael "Mickey" Pena, 46, told the court he fell on hard economic times, according to prosecutors. Senior U.S. District Judge Janis Graham Jack responded, "you have choices when you go down this road."
According to prosecutors, Pena played a minor role in the conspiracy to move marijuana from Port Mansfield to Corpus Christi using shallow bottom fishing boats on the Intracoastal Waterway. However, Judge Jack denied a request for a lighter sentence because Pena perjured himself during the February 4, 2013 trial.
Pena had shown up with a trailer to pick up the boat at marker 37 a short time after authorities had already intercepted it. The boat was registered in his name just two weeks prior. The previous owners of the boat were also members of the drug smuggling conspiracy.
Rogelio Mendoza, 38, Alberto Lopez-Reyna, 40, Lombardo Zarate, 50, Glen Dial, 57, Luz Ramirez, 26, and Hector Perez-Gonzalez, 40, are all awaiting sentencing or already serving prison sentences after pleading guilty.