Mexican citizen sentenced to 151 months for drug trafficking

A Mexican citizen was sentenced Monday in Wichita to 151 months in federal prison for his role in a drug trafficking organization that distributed heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine in Wichita.

Juan Arellano Padilla, 36, of Kansas City, Kan., pleaded guilty Oct. 22 to one count each of conspiracy to distribute heroin, meth and cocaine and one count of distributing meth, U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom’s office said.

The case developed after Wichita police began an investigation in 2009 into suspected drug trafficking involving a number of people, including some who had ties to Mexico, Grissom’s office said.

During the investigation:

• Oklahoma City police stopped a van in Norman, Okla., and seized 137 1/2 pounds of marijuana bound for Wichita.

• Wiretaps were obtained to monitor traffickers’ phones.

• Global positioning devices on specified cell phones were monitored.

• Investigators arranged to buy drugs from the conspirators.

In his plea, Padilla admitted that in 2010 he was part of the trafficking organization.

Co-defendants were sentenced earlier. Carlos Ramirez received 96 months; Alejandro R. Hernandez, 87 months; Ponciano Munoz-Meraz, 70 months; and Guillermo Amparan, 24 months.