McALLEN, Texas — A war hero who received the prestigious Bronze Star Medal will spend more than two years in prison for his role in obtaining illegal firearms for Mexico’s Gulf Cartel.
On Thursday afternoon, 71-year-old Jose Gertrudis Partida and 44-year-old Dimas Rodriguez went before U.S. District Judge Micaela Alvarez who sentenced each man to a prison term of 30 months and 70 months respectively. Both men had pleaded guilty to various weapons charges over the summer.
According to information provided to Breitbart Texas by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Partida asked for a lower sentence citing his age and military service record. Prosecutors claimed that the sentence was appropriate since he had provided multiple firearms to Mexico’s Gulf Cartel and was involved in drug trafficking activities.
The case against Partida and Rodriguez began in December 2015 when agents with the U.S Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Homeland Security Investigations carried out an investigation into the trafficking of firearms in McAllen, prosecutors revealed. The investigation revolved around Partida selling three AR-15 rifles to Rodriguez so he could get them to the Gulf Cartel. Rodriguez had previously been convicted in a Texas court for drug trafficking offenses and, as a felon, is not legally able to posses or purchase a firearm.
As Breitbart Texas has reported, Mexican cartels such as Los Zetas and the Gulf have established firearm distribution lines. Since firearms are illegal in Mexico, cartel members recruit individuals that can legally purchase weapons in the U.S.
Ildefonso Ortiz is an award winning journalist with Breitbart Texas. He co-founded the Cartel Chronicles project with Brandon Darby and Stephen K. Bannon. You can follow him on Twitter and on Facebook.