Gulf Drug Cartel Forced U.S. Citizen to Smuggle Heroin
by Sergio Chapa
A Rio Grande Valley man is behind bars where he claims he was forced to smuggle more than $52,000 dollars worth of heroin by men he met at a bar in Reynosa.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers arrested 18-year-old Carlos Galaviz on a federal drug charge on Sunday.
Court records released Tuesday show that Galaviz came up from Mexico at the Hidalgo-Reynosa International Bridge where he allegedly appeared nervous.
Customs officers sent him to secondary inspection where authorities found a package with 1.64 pounds of heroin hidden in the crotch area under his clothes.
Authorities told Action 4 News that they believe the heroin is worth about $54,480 dollars on the streets.
Galaviz told invsetigators that he met a group of men at a bar in Reynosa on Saturday night.
They asked him to smuggle drugs but he declined. The men allegedly replied that they know where his family lived and something would happen to them if he didn’t.
The alleged drug smugglers told Galaviz to meet them on a shopping center on the American side of the border where they would give him money.
Galaviz appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Dorina Ramos in McAllen on Monday morning.
Investigators identified Galaviz as an American citizen but did not say which city he lived in.
Judge Ramos denied bond for Galaviz until a Thursday morning hearing.