EDINBURG, Texas (ValleyCentral) — An Edinburg man who has been arrested several times for cattle theft — and who also announced his candidacy for president — is wanted after failing to appear in court.
Phillip Drake was arrested Oct. 16, 2021, and again on Nov. 19, 2021, both times on charges of cattle theft, according to Hidalgo County Jail records.
Drake was arrested a third time on charges of theft of property between $30,000 and $150,000 on May 5, court records indicate.
According to records, Drake was a no-show at court on Oct. 17. An arrest warrant was filed Nov. 1.
ValleyCentral spoke with Drake and special ranger Joe Aguilar with the Texas & Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association in May.
“Phillip Drake was acquiring cattle by not means of purchasing it, but in this case, some of these cattle were coming down from the San Antonio area just to come graze and then they were going to be sent back,” Aguilar said in a previous report. “[Drake] was actually getting paid by another victim to graze the cattle then send them back.”
According to a post by the TSCRA, Drake told two men he would help them get rich. The men gave him $147,950 in exchange for 232 head of cattle to start a business.
“After six months, they saw no return and only saw their cattle from the window of a pickup truck as Drake would point out which were theirs,” the post stated.
The TSCRA stated that Drake eventually gave the brothers multiple checks totaling $272,920 — but when they tried to cash them, they were written from accounts that were closed or nonexistent.
When ValleyCentral spoke with Drake in May, he said he was experiencing health problems in 2021.
“Back at the beginning of last year I had a stroke, so I was down for a while, so when I finally started coming around again I got the workers from the hay business to start going through cattle,” said Drake. “There were cattle missing.”
At the time, Drake said he was turning his focus to the 2024 presidential campaign and would not let the arrests affect him.
“I mean bogus charges are bogus charges,” Drake said in the previous report.