El Coss Pleads Guilty To be Sentenced in April 2020 in Brownsville

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El Coss Pleads Guilty To be Sentenced in April 2020 in Brownsville

mr.browntown956
This post was updated on .


A former leader of the Gulf Cartel appeared in federal court in Brownsville on Thursday, where he entered a guilty plea on count one of an indictment charging him with manufacturing and distributing massive amounts of cocaine and marijuana.

Jorge Eduardo Costilla-Sánchez appeared with his attorney before U.S. District Judge Fernando Rodriguez Jr. in an orange jumpsuit, handcuffs, shackles, and a belly chain.

He pleaded guilty to Count 1 of a 4th superseding indictment transferred to the Southern District of Texas from the District of Columbia.

Costilla-Sánchez previously pleaded guilty in 2017 to two counts of assault on a federal officer. He has yet to be sentenced for this offense.

A government prosecutor re-arraigned Costilla-Sánchez, specifying that details which arose from the case — complete with 26 defendants — in which the man is estimated to have been personally responsible for the distribution of at least 450 kilograms of cocaine and over 90,000 kilograms of marijuana.



The amounts equate to over 992 pounds of cocaine and roughly 198,416 pounds of marijuana, respectively.

Those listed in the indictment were charged with conspiring to manufacture and distribute cocaine and marijuana in Mexico, Colombia, Guatemala, Panama, and elsewhere for eventual distribution in the United States.

During the hearing, Costilla-Sánchez’s attorney argued two objections to the charges, including that his client did not “agree or admit” to the estimated amount of 90,000 kilograms of marijuana, as he was unaware of how much marijuana he had distributed.

An additional objection was raised regarding drug seizures in Panama and Mexico in 2007 that Sánchez said he wasn’t aware of and didn’t recall.

The prosecutor said that authorities seized 2,400 kilograms of illicit drugs in Tampico in 2007. A separate bust the same year led to the seizure of 700 kilograms of cocaine in Colón, Panama.

Costilla-Sánchez was initially listed in the federal indictment on Nov. 15, 2007, but was not arrested until September 2012 when the Mexican Navy located him in Tampico, Tamaulipas, according to reports written at the time of his arrest.

Those reports also indicated that the arrest was the direct result of information shared by Mario Cárdenas Guillén, whose brother Antonio Ezequiel Cárdenas Gúillen also ran the cartel and was listed first in the indictment before he was killed by the Mexican Navy in 2010.

Costilla-Sánchez was placed in control of Matamoros following the 2007 extradition of former Gulf Cartel leader Osiel Cárdenas Guillén to the United States. The extradition, in combination with Guillén’s 2003 arrest in Mexico, caused infighting among involved groups and a reorganization of the cartel’s power structure.

Costilla-Sánchez allegedly ordered the assassination of a leader of Los Zetas, prompting the groups to formally split in 2010. The move sparked excessive violence among warring factions that spilled onto the streets of northern Tamaulipas.

On Thursday, Costilla-Sánchez admitted to arranging the transport and distribution of the drugs for the Gulf Cartel. He used contacts networked through his position as a police officer in Matamoros to facilitate the cartel’s work, according to prosecutors.

The attorneys accused Costilla-Sánchez of taking over the operation, controlling shipments, and maintaining control of various plazas. The man also admitted to maintaining control of hitmen and ordering assassinations and other acts of violence against adversaries throughout his career, according to prosecutors.

Attorneys cited operations from Nuevo Laredo to Matamoros, all of which Costilla-Sánchez told the court that he was in control of.

The man answered, “Yes,” when the judge asked whether the allegations read by the prosecutors were true.

Costilla-Sánchez faces life in prison, a life-long term of supervised release, and a $10 million fine. The mandatory minimums attached to the charge are a prison term of 10 years in federal custody and a minimum of five years of supervised release.

The judge also informed the court that forfeiture or restitution for victims could be ordered as a result of the guilty plea.

Costilla-Sánchez’s sentence will run concurrently.

Costilla-Sánchez will be sentenced in Brownsville on April 14.

¡tRuCHAS!
MX
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Re: El Coss Pleads Guilty To be Sentenced in April 2020 in Brownsville

MX
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Re: El Coss Pleads Guilty To be Sentenced in April 2020 in Brownsville

MaxiMillian2k19
This post was updated on .
In reply to this post by mr.browntown956
I heard that Coss was fluent in English language and that he illegally reside in the U.S. during his teens, can anyone confirm this?
MX
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Re: El Coss Pleads Guilty To be Sentenced in April 2020 in Brownsville

MX
This post was updated on .
@Max: Never heard of this but not unusual at the border.

I have a feeling he will get a minor sentence and be given time for the two assault charges. The FBI/DEA won't let that pass and that will still guarantee a shorter sentence (which is what Costilla really wants).

Do you all think he may be the highest ranking Gulf Cartel member sentenced since Osiel Cárdenas Guillén? I'd say yes.
J
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Re: El Coss Pleads Guilty To be Sentenced in April 2020 in Brownsville

J
In reply to this post by mr.browntown956
Is the assault on an officer from the incident with Osiel Cardenas in 1997?  Or did that occur in the US, during his time in federal custody?  
MX
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Re: El Coss Pleads Guilty To be Sentenced in April 2020 in Brownsville

MX
It was for the 1999 standoff in Matamoros, where several Gulf Cartel gunmen surrounded two FBI/DEA agents and a Mexican informant at gunpoint for several minutes. Costilla was there along with Osiel and several others. Most of them were wearing uniforms from the local/state police, including Costilla.
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Re: El Coss Pleads Guilty To be Sentenced in April 2020 in Brownsville

leChef
In reply to this post by MX
Most definitely the highest ranking since Osiel.

Is there a transcript of any testimony he has done? I wish they would ask more questions of the structure of cartels in these court cases. I mean, I understand that they have to keep to the accusations at hand, but it would serve to illuminate the severity of the case as opposed to the same crime committed without cartel ties.

And the upside is of course that we would have more info
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Re: El Coss Pleads Guilty To be Sentenced in April 2020 in Brownsville

coetzeefan101
In reply to this post by MX
Yes I would say he is the highest ranking CDG leader to be sentenced since Osiel.
He's also the main reason why the CDG and Zetas split, El Coss is very lucky to have escaped with his life.
MX
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Re: El Coss Pleads Guilty To be Sentenced in April 2020 in Brownsville

MX
You say that because he ordered Condor 3's murder? For me the biggest factor was the arrest and extradition of Osiel, which fragmented the group. Not to mention when he started snitching. Los Zetas never liked Tony Tormenta and were too independent by the time Osiel was extradited. It was bound to happen with or without Costilla if you ask me.
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Re: El Coss Pleads Guilty To be Sentenced in April 2020 in Brownsville

coetzeefan101
MX - You made some good points and I have to agree with you. Yes I said it because he ordered Condor's execution who was a friend of Z40.
But I think you are right that the Zetas would've separated regardless.