Former sheriff's commander expected to plead guilty on Thursday

Joe Padilla File Photo

A former commander with the Hidalgo County Sheriff's Office is now expected to plead guilty to his role in a drug trafficking scheme out of Weslaco.

Former Commander Jose "Joe" Padilla is expected to appear before U.S. District Court Judge Randy Crane on Thursday morning.

Details were not immediately available but court records show Padilla is expected to change their pleas from "not guilty" to "guilty."

Federal agents arrested Padilla on drug trafficking charges back on Christmas Eve.

Padilla is out on bond but is one of 12 suspects named in a case involving Weslaco drug trafficker Tomas "El Gallo" Gonzalez.

Court records show Padilla, Gonzalez and the other 10 were all going to plead guilty together on April 23rd but the hearing for Padilla was moved up to 11 a.m. Thursday.

Records show that Gonzalez and the others are still scheduled to enter their guilty pleas on April 23rd.

Former Sheriff Lupe Trevio pleaded guilty on Monday to laundering re-election campaign contributions from Gonzalez.

Trevio's former chief of staff Pat Medina pleaded guilty on Friday to knowing about the sheriff's illegal activity and not reporting it to authorities.

Trevio is expected to be sentenced on July 25th while Medina is expected to be sentenced on July 3rd.

The former sheriff's son Jonathan Trevio and 10 other men convicted in the Panama Unit corruption scandal are all expected to sentenced on April 29th.