GULFPORT, Miss. (WTOK) - Pablo Vega-Ontanon, 53, an illegal alien from Mexico who was living in Georgia, was sentenced Monday in Mississippi to 74 months in federal prison for possession with intent to distribute heroin.
The government says Vega-Ontanon was arrested with enough fentanyl to kill 500,000 people.
On Nov. 6, 2018, Vega-Ontanon and two co-defendants arrived in Gulfport to sell heroin to a confidential informant. They claimed to have ten kilograms of heroin hidden in a compartment of their vehicle. All three were arrested a short time later.
The substance was eventually tested and found to contain nine kilograms of heroin and one kilogram of fentanyl. One kilogram of fentanyl can produce half a million fatal doses.
Vega-Ontanon was indicted last year along with co-defendants Eder Ortega-Casarubias and Eric Estudillo-Carrazco.
Co-defendant Eder Ortega-Casarubias pleaded guilty and was sentenced June 26, 2019, to 127 months in prison followed by five years of supervised release. Co-defendant Estudillo-Carrazco pleaded guilty on August 28, 2019, and will be sentenced Nov. 27, 2019. He faces a maximum penalty of life in prison and a $10,000,000 fine.
The case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney John Meynardie.