A 63-count indictment unsealed in U.S. District Court alleges the leader of a cocaine smuggling operation in Wichita conspired with his father to launder more than $174,000 in drug proceeds by purchasing real estate and vehicles, U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom said Thursday.
Fourteen defendants are named in the indictment that alleges a drug trafficking organization was active in Wichita from Oct. 30, 2010, to this month. The alleged leader of the conspiracy, Juvenal Fernandez Jr., 30, of Wichita, is alleged to have conspired with his father, co-defendant Juvenal G. Fernandez, 56, to launder the drug funds.
Twelve of the defendants are from Wichita, and the other two are from Amarillo, Texas.
Fernandez Jr. was previously convicted of aggravated assault and robbery, according to state correction records. Beginning in 2006, Juvenal G. Fernandez received wire transfers of money from unknown sources in Mexico that were deposited into his personal bank account at Emprise Bank in Wichita.
Juvenal G. Fernandez used the money, which the indictment alleges was cash proceeds from his son’s illegal drug distribution, to purchase real estate properties.
Many of the properties were titled in the name of Juvenal G. Fernandez, although his son continued to exercise control over the assets and received the profits from the sale of the real estate. The indictment alleges drug proceeds were used to purchase 2504 N. Waco, 2760 N. Arkansas, 1833 S. Market, 2345 N. Salina and 3377 N. Wild Thicket, near 29th and Tyler.
Of the phone calls made in completing the alleged transactions, 22 involved numbers with Texas area codes and 11 had New Mexico area codes, according to the indictment. Only one number had a 316, or Wichita, area code.
Charged in the indictment are: