AUSTIN, Texas -- A man closely related to the leadership of one of the biggest, most versatile and violent criminal organizations in the world faces charges that he bought racehorses to hide illegal drug profits for the powerful Mexican cartel.
Federal prosecutors will present opening statements Tuesday in the case against Jose Trevino Morales, a brother of two top leaders of the Zetas.
Prosecutors say Morales disguised drug money through the purchase of racehorses at a ranch in Oklahoma. He has been charged with conspiracy in federal court in Texas.
Morales' wife and daughter have pleaded guilty to lesser charges. His brothers remain at large. The horses have been auctioned by the government.
Lawyers for Morales have filed documents suggesting they will offer a contrasting portrait of his equestrian business dealings.