- Associated Press - Wednesday, January 28, 2015

McALLEN, Texas (AP) - An ex-federal contractor in South Texas faces up to life in prison for using a U.S. Department of Agriculture truck to smuggle drugs across the border.

Mario Guadalupe Saenz (synz) of McAllen pleaded guilty to attempting to possess with intent to distribute about 20 pounds of cocaine.

Prosecutors in McAllen on Wednesday announced the 27-year-old Saenz remains in custody pending sentencing.

Saenz in October was observed driving a white pickup truck with government license plates through an opening in a border fence. Investigators say Saenz retrieved a bag from the brush near the Rio Grande.

He used the USDA vehicle to haul the bag to a parking lot in McAllen before being arrested.

Saenz at the time was a USDA contractor. Further details on his job weren’t immediately available Wednesday.

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