Marcelo  Hernandez

A Harold resident was sentenced last week to serve 15 years — in addition to time he is already serving in federal court — in three cases in which he admitted to rape, drug trafficking and related charges.

Marcelo Salinas Hernandez, 44, of Harold, was sentenced in Floyd Circuit Court to collectively serve 15 years in the three cases against him in Floyd County, with the sentences set to run consecutive to another sentence he received in federal court.

Commonwealth’s Attorney Brent Turner said after serving this sentence and the federal court sentence, Hernandez will be deported from the U.S. 

In one case, Hernandez was indicted in Sept. 2015 for two counts of first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance, trafficking in marijuana, trafficking in a legend drug and first- and second-degree possession of a controlled substance. In exchange for his guilty plea, the Commonwealth agreed to drop all but one first-degree trafficking charge against him, and offered a five-year-sentence to run consecutive to the other cases. 

In the other case, Hernandez was indicted in Sept. 2017 for two counts of complicity to traffick in a controlled substance (cocaine). In exchange for his guilty plea in that case, the Commonwealth agreed to dismiss one of those charges against him, and offered a five-year consecutive sentence. 

Those two sentences are set to run consecutive to another five-year sentence Hernandez received in another Floyd County case in which he was charged in 2015 with seven counts of second-degree rape, second-degree sodomy and first-degree sexual abuse. In exchange for his guilty plea, the Commonwealth agreed to dismiss all but one rape charge, and offered a consecutive five-year sentence. Turner said the victim in that case was an underage juvenile. 

He said Hernandez “went on the run” after he was charged with rape and he was later charged in several drug-related cases, both in this county and at the federal level.  

In federal court, Hernandez was indicted in 2015 on eight counts of cocaine trafficking.

He was sentenced in federal court in August 2017 and ordered to serve 63 months on each count, with those counts to run concurrently to each other, but consecutive to sentences that were to be imposed on Hernandez in the Floyd County cases. Upon completion of the sentence, Hernandez would be placed on supervised release for six years, the federal court order says. 

“So, he’s been serving that while these cases were still pending,” Turner said. “So, what we’ve been working on for the last year and a half or so was to try to either try all of these cases, begin trying them, or get him to agree to a plea deal on everything. And after a lot of time and negotiating, we were able to come up with the sentences that he received the other day, which total up to 15 years, including the pleas on the sex case that were with the agreement of the victim in that case. They will run consecutive to his federal time, and then, the ultimate goal and the end result of all of this will be that once he has served out every last day that he owes his federal case and on our cases, he’ll be remanded back to federal authorities to be deported.”

Turner said Hernandez will also have to register as a convicted sex offender, as requested by the victim. 

“But in the end, if he’s deported after serving all of his time, that’s about as good as you can do in any case,” Turner said. “There’s a lot of people I’ve prosecuted in Floyd County that I wish I could deport, but I can’t.” 

Hernandez appealed his federal court sentence and sought other remedies in federal court, but his requests were denied. 

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