NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Three Nashvillians have received prison sentences for importing drugs into the United States from Mexico worth over $1.6 million.
According to the Department of Justice, Elias Herrera, 31, Liz Jomayra Diaz-Colon, 23, and Jonathan Guemez, 30, all previously pleaded guilty and admitted they had worked together to import heroin and fentanyl into the United States from Mexico.
In 2021, the three began working with Mexican drug traffickers to coordinate transportation of multiple drug loads into the United States.
On Aug. 20, 2021, Diaz-Colon reportedly tried to pass through a Border Patrol checkpoint when a K-9 alerted authorities to her vehicle, leading to the discovery of 4.66 kilograms of heroin concealed in the battery of her Jeep Cherokee, according to officials.
The Department of Justice said on the following day, Herrera tried to enter the United States when authorities found 4.76 kilograms of fentanyl in the car’s battery.
When Guemez tried to enter the United States, law enforcement seized 3.94 kilograms of heroin from his vehicle, according to officials.
Authorities said the investigation revealed the three individuals had been communicating with each other through WhatsApp, referring to themselves as the “Suicide Squad”.
At the time of their pleas, they admitted to working together to import a total of 8.6 kilograms of heroin and 4.76 kilograms of fentanyl into the United States, with the drugs having an estimated value of about $1.6 million, according to investigators.
Herrera received an 87-month prison sentence that is to be followed by three years of supervised release. Officials said Herrera will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.
Diaz-Colon and Guemez were previously sentenced to 36 and 87 months in federal prison, respectively, and must serve four years on supervised release, according to the Department of Justice.