MARSHALL, Texas – Two Harrison County men were sentenced to prison Friday for federal drug trafficking and firearms crimes.
Armando Ivan De La Torre, a.k.a. “Poncho,” pleaded guilty on Oct. 6, 2020, to possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and use and carrying of a firearm during a drug trafficking crime. De La Torre was sentenced to 15 years and 10 months in federal prison today by U.S. District Judge Rodney Gilstrap.
Judge Gilstrap also sentenced Martin Lopez to seven years in federal prison for possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine.
According to information presented in court, both De la Torre and Lopez were members of an organization responsible for importing large quantities of methamphetamine from Mexico and distributing it in Marshall. The ring operated as both direct seller of methamphetamine, as well as a source-of-supply to other drug dealers.
On Feb. 19, 2020, De La Torre and Lopez were indicted by a federal grand jury along with seven other co-conspirators, and charged with violations of federal drug trafficking laws.
Operation Pine Curtain is a long-term drug trafficking and money-laundering investigation that has already resulted in the arrest and prosecution of numerous co-conspirators. Danny Brian Hernandez, Ronald Charles Parker, Daniel Ramirez, Guadalupe Salvador Diosdado, Erik Alberto Galindo, and Rachel Naomi Hernandez have pleaded guilty and have been sentenced. Andres Michael Martinez-Juarez, Cristian Leobardo Torres-Santana, Francisco Moreno, Fernie Moreno, Amanda Jean Crisp, and Damarcus Damon Armstrong have pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing. Several others have been arrested, pleaded not guilty, and are awaiting trial.
This is an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) case and is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; the Texas Department of Public Safety; the Harrison County Sheriff’s Office; and the Marshall Pol