An undocumented immigrant pleaded guilty to drug trafficking and illegally possessing a firearm after being stopped by Calera police.
According to U.S Attorney Prim F. Escalona and Special Agent Katrina Berger with Homeland Security Investigations, Juan Luis Salas Jimenez, a 19-year-old undocumented immigrant, could face up to 35 years in prison.
Homeland Security and the Calera Police Department investigated the case together.
In September of 2021, Salas-Jimenez was pulled over by Calera police. According to the plea agreement, officers with the Calera Police Department conducted a lawful traffic stop on Salas-Jimenez. Salas-Jimenez admitted to officers that he had some personal-use cocaine in his wallet. Officers removed Salas-Jimenez from the vehicle and searched his wallet, where they found two small baggies containing cocaine. During the search of Salas-Jimenez's vehicle, officers found a small baggie containing crack cocaine under the driver's side front seat, a grocery bag containing crack cocaine inside a backpack on the passenger's side back seat, a large scale, a small digital scale, a roll of vacuum-sealed bags, and a Smith & Wesson revolver.
Salas-Jimenez was also charged with possession of methamphetamine and marijuana, but neither was mentioned in the plea agreement.
The maximum penalty for possession with intent to distribute cocaine is 20 years in prison and a fine of no more than $250,000. The maximum penalty for possession of a firearm by a prohibited person is ten years in prison and a fine of not more than $250,000. The minimum penalty for possession of a firearm during a drug trafficking crime is five years in prison, which must run consecutive to any other sentence, and a fine of no more than $10,000,000.
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