A former car dealership owner in Calexico pleaded guilty in federal court Tuesday to laundering tens of thousands of dollars in drug money through vehicle sales after an undercover operation by law enforcement.
Undercover IRS officers led Ignacio Gonzalez, former owner of Del Valle Auto Sales in Calexico, to believe they had cars that were the proceeds of drug trafficking.
According to the plea agreement, Gonzalez transferred and delivered funds from the sale of the cars. He also failed to file currency transaction reports required by law when he received $19,420 in cash and $24,500 in cash.
He agreed to give ownership of the vehicles to generic names, manipulated the purchase agreements, made false reports and agreed not to report the cash transactions to the IRS.
Gonzalez must pay the $43,920 from the car sales and a $20,000 fine.
He is scheduled for sentencing Nov. 4 and could face up to a $500,000 fine and 20 years in prison.