Delia Gualdina Velásquez is sentenced to 45 years in prison for kidnapping (PHOTOS)

Delia Gualdina Velásquez was sentenced to 45 years in prison for the kidnapping of her cousin Ulises Valladares. The woman wanted to coll...

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  • Delia Gualdina Velásquez was sentenced to 45 years in prison for the kidnapping of her cousin Ulises Valladares.
  • The woman wanted to collect $ 20,000 that the man supposedly owed her for a truck.
  • Ulises Valladares was shot dead by the FBI when agents tried to rescue him in Houston, Texas.

Delia Gualdina Velásquez was sentenced to 45 years in prison for the aggravated kidnapping of her cousin Ulises Valladares in Texas. Velasquez, 50, was found guilty of having participated in a conspiracy along with several other Hispanics in Houston to kidnap her cousin for the purpose of demanding a ransom of thousands of dollars due to an alleged debt.

The kidnapping that Delia Gualdina Velásquez orchestrated, along with her accomplices, ended in tragedy because an agent from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) who was supposedly going to rescue Ulises Valladares, 47, killed him with a bullet during the operation in which they were going to save him from his captors.

Delia Gualdina Velásquez receives a harsh sentence for kidnapping

Delia Gualdina Velásquez receives a harsh sentence for kidnapping
Honduran Delia Gualdina Velásquez, 50, was sentenced to 45 years in prison for having been the organizer of the kidnapping of her cousin Ulises Valladares to collect an old debt for a truck from the bad. (Photo: Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office)

Brett Ligon, Montgomery County District Attorney in north Houston, revealed that Honduran Delia Gualdina Velásquez told her ex-husband the details of where her cousin Ulises Valladares lived, his work routines, income and the precise times when the kidnapping could be perpetrated.

The motive that Delia Gualdina Velásquez had to arm the conspiracy in the aggravated kidnapping was a debt that, supposedly, Ulises Valladares had with her for 20,000 dollars. The debt dates back more than ten years from the truck transaction, according to a joint investigation by various law enforcement agencies.

Delia Gualdina Velásquez, the mind behind a crime

Delia Gualdina Velásquez, the mind behind a crime
Ulises Valladares, a Honduran immigrant and father of a family, was shot dead at age 47 when FBI agents tried to rescue him from his kidnapping. (Photo: Courtesy of the Valladares Family)

Delia Gualdina Velásquez heard her sentence on Monday, August 2, 2021 when she declared guilty and was sentenced to 45 years in prison for being the mastermind in the kidnapping of her cousin Ulises Valladares. Until the moment of writing this story, the woman still sleeps in the prison of the Montgomery County in Conroe, Texas, north of Houston.

The legal documents of the case do not specify when Delia Gualdina Velásquez will be transferred to the prison of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ, for its acronym in English) where the woman must live the next 45 years of her life to pay for the kidnapping of her cousin Ulises Valladares.

A kidnapping in the ‘name’ of the Gulf Cartel

Delia Gualdina Velásquez, the mind behind a crime
Nicholas Chase Cunningham, 42, was instructed by his ex-wife Delia Gualdina Velásquez on how to kidnap his cousin Ulises Valladares. (Photo: Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office)

On the morning of Wednesday, January 24, 2018, two armed men arrived at the home of Ulises Valladares, in Conroe, and took him out by force. His 12-year-old son was in the house and the boy was ordered not to report to the authorities because the kidnapping had been ordered by the Gulf Cartel, a group of drug traffickers from Mexico.

The boy ignored the two kidnappers and called the Conroe Police Department (CPD) to report the crime against your dad. The CPD agents in turn called the FBI agents in Texas since kidnapping is a federal crime in the United States. Until then the name of Delia Gualdina Velásquez did not appear.

The kidnappers, the wife and the mistress

Delia Gualdina Velásquez, the mind behind a crime
Jimmy Tony Sánchez, 38, joined in the kidnapping of Ulises Valladares and was one of the two armed men who took him out of his house at gunpoint. (Photo: Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office)

The two armed men were Nicholas Chase Cunningham and Jimmy Tony Sánchez. Both with extensive criminal records. The case documents detail that Cunningham was married, or had a romantic relationship, with Delia Gualdina Velásquez and she was the one who invited him to be part of the kidnapping.

Cunningham, who flaunted as a rapper and security guard in several Houston nightclubs, recruited Sánchez to participate in the kidnapping and then his lover Sophia Pérez Heat to be the one who hid his victim Ulises Valladares in his house until they will pay the ransom.

The FBI listened to all the kidnappers’ calls

The FBI listened to all the kidnappers' calls
Sophia Pérez-Heat, 38, was the mistress of one of the kidnappers and Ulises Valladares was held captive in her home. (Photo: Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office)

Delia Gualdina Velásquez was never seen by her cousin Ulises Valladares, but she was the one who provided her with cell phones so that her ex-partner Nicholas Chase Cunningham could negotiate the ransom with the Valladares family. Jimmy Tony Sánchez served as the victim’s armed guard, taking him from one place to another and threatening him.

What of course Delia Gualdina Velásquez, Nicholas Chase Cunningham and Jimmy Tony Sánchez did not know was that the negotiation calls in the kidnapping were all the time intervened, monitored and tracked by the elite agents of the Anti-Kidnapping Unit of the FBI in Houston .

Delia Gualdina Velásquez coordinated all the negotiations

coordinated all the negotiations
(Photo: David Dorantes / MundoHispánico)

The kidnappers, under the guidance of Delia Gualdina Velásquez, insisted on being members of the Gulf Cartel and demanded the payment of thousands of dollars to free Ulises Valladares for an alleged $ 8,000 debt that the man had with his criminal organization.

While the kidnappers negotiated with Ulises Valladares ‘family, FBI agents detected the exact location of the kidnappers’ cell phones. The two men were hiding in a Webster, Texas motel south of the Houston metropolitan area, en route to Galveston Island.

The feds catch two of the kidnappers

The feds catch two of the kidnappers
(Photo: David Dorantes / MundoHispánico)

Almost midnight on that Wednesday, January 24, 2018, and through a coordinated operation from Conroe and Webster, FBI agents surprised kidnappers Nicholas Chase Cunningham, 42, and Jimmy Tony in a motel room. Sánchez, 38, when they believed they were negotiating with the Ulises Valladares family.

However, FBI agents discovered that the kidnapping victim was not in the motel room. During the interrogation with federal agents Cunningham revealed that Ulises Valladares was held captive in a room in the house of his 35-year-old lover Sophia Pérez-Heat.

The rescue of Ulises Valladares that went very wrong

The rescue of Ulises Valladares that went very wrong
(Photo: David Dorantes / MundoHispánico)

At 3:40 a.m. on Thursday, January 25, 2018, armed FBI agents arrived at the house marked 7323 Elbert Street, in the Trinity Gardens neighborhood of northeast Houston, for the rescue operation of Ulises Valladares. which ended in tragedy after the kidnapping planned by her cousin Delia Gualdina Velásquez.

The FBI agents, armed and with combat equipment, without knowing what they were going to find in the house, raided the home in a violent manner. In the place there were children and at least two older women. One of the officers who jumped breaking the glass of a window maintains that a Hispanic man tried to take away his semiautomatic rifle.

Ulises Valladares was shot dead by a federal police officer

Ulises Valladares was shot dead by a federal police officer
(Photo: David Dorantes / MundoHispánico)

There was a struggle between the federal agent and the man of the house and at one point the rifle fired a shot. When the situation calmed down, the agents discovered that the kidnapped Honduran Ulises Valladares had been shot dead by the FBI agent. So far the federal agent has not yet been charged with anything.

The case sparked a confrontation between agents of the Homicide Division of the Houston Police Department (HPD) who took the investigation into the case for the death of Ulises Valladares despite opposition from the federals. The investigation revealed that Delia Gualdina Velásquez had planned the kidnapping.

Who is responsible for the death of Ulises Valladares?

(Photo: Courtesy of the Valladares Family)

Since then, the family of Ulises Valladares hired the lawyer Randall Kallinen, specialized in the human rights of victims of police brutality, as they want to file charges against the FBI agent responsible for the Honduran’s death. The corporation is refusing to release the agent’s name until its investigations and those of HPD are complete.

Sophia Pérez Heat was sentenced last year to 20 years in prison on the aggravated kidnapping charge. Nicholas Chase Cunningham was sentenced to life imprisonment albeit with the right to leave for good conduct after 30 years. Jimmy Tony Sánchez was sentenced to 20 years in prison. The only thing that remains to be known is the name of the FBI agent.

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