McALLEN — A Mexican man faces drug smuggling charges for trying to smuggle more than 20 kilos of cocaine at the Pharr International Bridge last week.
On Thursday, Nephtali Alfonso Albarran-Garcia made his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate J. Scott Hacker where he heard the charges against him, records show.
On April 21, Albarran was arrested at the Pharr port of entry as he attempted to cross into the U.S., the complaint filed against Albarran stated.
On that date, Albarran, 46, attempted to enter the U.S. driving a tractor trailer owned by “Norte Transportes,” the document stated.
As he attempted to enter the country through the port of entry, CBP officers referred the tractor for a secondary inspection; where subsequently they found 20 packages that contained a white powdery substance later confirmed to be cocaine.
The packages weighed a total of 23.28 kilograms, the record shows.
After he was arrested, Albarran waived his Miranda Rights and provided federal agents with a statement.
“HSI Special Agents interviewed Albarran-Garcia, who stated he was paid $3,000-$4,000 to drive the tractor trailer into the United States and drop it off in a parking lot. He further stated that he was suspicious that there were drugs in the vehicle but he simply followed orders and did not ask questions,” the complaint stated.
Albarran, who remains in federal custody, is scheduled for a detention hearing where a court will decide whether or not the Mexican man will be granted a bond this week, records show.