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Instagram drug trafficker who targeted North Texas teens sentenced to 19 years in prison | #socialmedia | #education | #technology | #infosec



The leader of a drug trafficking ring that targeted high school students through social media was sentenced this month to more than 19 years in federal prison.

Ricardo Rosas Garcia, 24, of Irving, used Instagram and other social-media apps to advertise and sell drugs and firearms, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Dallas.

Garcia pleaded guilty to conspiracy with intent to distribute controlled substances and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Three of Garcia’s associates also have pleaded guilty to various charges.

Irving police began investigating the trafficking ring in 2020 after receiving numerous complaints from Irving-area high schools.

Upon identifying Rosas as the leader, undercover agents conducted 14 purchases of cocaine, methamphetamine, LSD and Tetrahydrocannabinol (TCH), according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Agents also negotiated with Rosas to purchase a .40-caliber Beretta handgun, which was delivered to an agent by Rosas’ associate.

Garcia used social media handles, “Ricky Rosas,” “rickyrosastv3,” and “rickyrosastc6″, and advertised on both Instagram and the social-media app, Telegram.

Members of the ring employed several children as young as 15 years old to sell drugs for them across North Texas, according to the press release. Members also published the names of people they believed were cooperating with the government on social media, putting those people’s lives at risk, it said.

Rosas was arrested in August 2020 with a Glock in his pocket, the press release said. After his arrest, he made numerous phone calls to associates to give them passwords so they could continue to advertise and sell drugs.

Three of Rosas’ associates have also pleaded guilty:

  • Anthony Isaac Ventura, 20, pleaded guilty in March to conspiracy to possess with intent to contribute controlled substances and was sentenced in August to 57 months in federal prison.
  • Addiel Isaias Portillo, 25, pleaded guilty in April to conspiracy to possess with intent to contribute controlled substances and was sentenced in September to 36 months in federal prison.
  • Uziel Hernandez, 26, pleaded guilty in April to conspiracy to possess with intent to contribute controlled substances. His sentencing hearing has been set for Oct. 28.



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