Lebanon man to serve 10 1/2 years in prison on federal drug trafficking charges

Gavel and documents on table close-up

HARRISBURG — A 25-year-old Lebanon County man will serve up to 181 months in prison for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute heroin and cocaine and possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania.

LezFrank Vargas-Herrera, a.k.a. Christian Rivera Rios, is one of 11 defendants originally indicted by a federal grand jury in July 2015 after an investigation by the Department of Homeland Security. Agents in Lebanon County intercepted packages sent from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic to the U.S. between June and October of 2014. The packages contained several kilograms of heroin and cocaine concealed inside electronics and auto parts.

The offense involved at least 9 kilograms of cocaine and 7 kilograms of heroin. Vargas-Herrera was also found to be in possession of a 9mm Glock handgun, a loaded magazine, and ammunition at the time of his arrest.

The following co-defendants were previously sentenced by Chief Judge Christopher C. Conner:

• Glauco Kelvin Celedonio-Smith, age 20, to 180 months’ imprisonment;

• Wilson Herrera, age 22, to 120 months’ imprisonment;

• Felix Rodriguez-Pabon, age 25, to 87 months’ imprisonment;

• Lional Martinez-Osaria, age 30, to 68 months’ imprisonment;

• Yefries Guillan-Herrera, age 24, to 57 months’ imprisonment;

• Wilfreddy Perez, age 24, to 35 months’ imprisonment; and

• Jose Pena-Herrera, age 22, to 12 months’ imprisonment.

Luis Beato-Herrera and Nelson Martinez are awaiting sentencing.

The investigation was conducted by HSI, the Pennsylvania State Police, the Berks County District Attorney’s Office Detective Unit, and the U.S. Customs & Border Protection. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Daryl F. Bloom.