Arizona: Michelle Krystal Sentenced to Smuggle Fentanyl

Arizona Woman, Michelle Krystal Mendez Sentenced to 57 Months for Conspiracy to Smuggle Fentanyl and Heroin into the U.S.

TUCSON, AR (STL.News) Michelle Krystal Mendez, 36, of Arizona, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Jennifer G. Zipps to 57 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release.  Mendez previously pleaded guilty to importing fentanyl into the United States from Mexico.

On November 21, 2020, Mendez was returning to the United States from Mexico through the Nogales, Arizona port of entry when a Customs and Border Protection canine alerted to her vehicle.  Officers then conducted a search and found nearly five pounds of fentanyl and two pounds of heroin carefully hidden inside the battery compartment under the hood of Mendez’s car.

Customs and Border Protection completed the interdiction and Homeland Security Investigations-Nogales conducted the investigation.  The United States Attorney’s Office, District of Arizona, Tucson, handled the prosecution.