LAREDO, Texas — A federal jury sitting in Laredo has convicted a 67-year-old Laredo man of conspiring to transport people in a sealed trailer, U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery said.
The jury deliberated for two hours before convicting David William McKeon of conspiracy to transport undocumented aliens after a two-day trial.
On April 20, McKeon arrived at the Laredo North Border Patrol (BP) checkpoint while driving a tractor-trailer. At that time, law enforcement heard suspicious noises coming from the trailer. They opened a ventilation door and discovered 124 locked behind the doors.
At trial, the jury heard that McKeon had said he had been recruited for the job at his birthday party a few days earlier. They heard he picked up the tractor-trailer on a dirt road, then received a fraudulent bill of lading in the parking lot of a Popeye’s restaurant before driving to the checkpoint.
However, the defense attempted to convince the jury that McKeon did not know there were aliens inside the trailer. The jury eventually found him guilty of participating in a plot to transport the aliens.
U.S. District Judge Marina Garcia Marmolejo presided over the trial and will set sentencing at a later date. At that point, McKeon faces up to 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000.
McKeon has been and will remain in custody pending sentencing.
Homeland Security Investigations conducted the investigation with the help of BP. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Brian Bajew and David Fawcett are pursuing the case.