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Cartel drug courier convicted of transporting 5,368 heroin pills

Posted at 3:25 PM, Feb 12, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-12 17:25:26-05

A Pima County jury found 41-year-old Sergio Ramon Chavez guilty of transporting more than 5,000 heroin pills. 

He faces three felony charges, including Transportation of Heroin for Sale, Illegally Conducting an Enterprise, and Conspiracy to Transport Heroin for Sale, according to a media release from Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich.

Thirty-one-year-old Anthony Sebastian Cadena, Chavez's co-defendant, pleaded guilty to Conspiracy to Transport Heroin for Sale. 

The incident happened in February 2017, when a Department of Public Safety Trooper tried to stop a car near El Con Mall. Chavez jumped out of the car and ran from police. He left behind a McDonald's bag containing 5,368 heroin pills.

Police found Chavez hiding in the bushes nearby. He admitted to police that the cartel was paying him to pick up and deliver drugs, according to the media release.

Chavez faces up to 35 years in prison. He's previously been convicted of Aggravated Assault and Child Abuse.