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Colombian national sentenced to 25 years in federal prison in drug trafficking conspiracy

SHERMAN – A Colombian national has been sentenced to 25 years in federal prison for drug trafficking violations, announced Eastern District of Texas U.S. Attorney Damien M. Diggs today.

Leonar Molina-Ferro, also known as Michel, 47, was convicted of conspiracy to manufacture and distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine knowing it would be imported and distributed in the United States.  Molina-Ferro was sentenced to 300 months in federal prison on December 19, 2023, by U.S. District Judge Amos L. Mazzant.

According to information presented in court, Molina-Ferro was a cocaine trafficker who assisted a Colombian-based drug cartel responsible for distributing large quantities of cocaine via land, sea, and air throughout South and Central America.  The bulk of these shipments were destined for the United States.  Molina-Ferro’s primary role was to coordinate maritime shipments of cocaine from Colombia to Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Honduras.  In his role, he directed several persons to acquire, transport, and distribute ton quantities of cocaine.  Molina-Ferro was arrested at the request of the United States for extradition at his apartment in Medellin, Colombia on August 14, 2018.  During the arrest operation, Molina-Ferro opened fire on Colombian National Police Officers, wounding the first officer to make entry into the apartment.  That officer was subsequently honored by the Drug Enforcement Administration and U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Eastern District of Texas for his bravery in the fight against narcotics trafficking.  Molina-Ferro was subsequently extradited to the United States from Colombia on December 2, 2020.

This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.

This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the North Texas OCDETF Strike Force and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Wes Wynne.  The Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs and the Narcotic and Dangerous Drug Section’s Judicial Attaché’s office at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota provided critical assistance in securing the arrest and extradition of Molina-Ferro.

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Davilyn Walston

Public Affairs Officer/Law Enforcement Coordinator

U.S. Attorney’s Office

Eastern District of Texas

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