U.S. Citizen Living in Tijuana to Plead Guilty in LA to Drug Charge

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - A U.S. citizen living in Tijuana is expected to plead guilty today in Los Angeles to a federal charge for allegedly planning to trade drugs for weapons, including machine guns and grenade launchers, which were intended for Mexican gangs.

Pedro Roberto Hernandez-Gomez, 32, was charged last year in Los Angeles federal court with possession of machine guns, attempt to transport explosives, being a felon in possession of firearms, distribution of heroin and distribution of fentanyl, according to the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

He is expected to plead guilty to one count of possession with intent to distribute fentanyl.

In December 2019, Hernandez-Gomez allegedly agreed to provide heroin and fentanyl in exchange for various machine guns, grenade launchers, grenades and handguns during what he believed were negotiations with traffickers but was, in fact, an ATF sting operation.

The following month, Hernandez-Gomez came to Los Angeles, where he provided more than two pounds each of heroin and fentanyl and renegotiated the amount of firearms and grenades in exchange for the heroin, according to a federal affidavit.

He allegedly agreed to exchange the narcotics for three Bushmaster machine guns, three grenade launchers and 72 inert grenades, which he thought were live explosives.

Hernandez-Gomez, a convicted felon who is not allowed to possess firearms, was arrested shortly after loading the firearms into his van, ATF officials said. According to the affidavit, he admitted he had planned to transport the guns and explosives back to Tijuana.

“This is a prime example of the type of violent criminal ATF targets along with the partnership of the U.S. Attorney's Office,'' Carlos A. Canino, ATF Los Angeles Field Division special agent in charge, said after Hernandez-Gomez was charged.

“It is clear these machine guns and grenade launchers were destined for criminal groups in Mexico,'' Canino said. “ATF works diligently to stop firearm trafficking schemes so guns do not end up in the hands of criminals, gangs or cartels, and we will continue to do so.''

Photo: Getty Images

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