Corpus Christi Group Arrested for Alleged Conspiracy to Traffic Methaphetamine
|U.S. Attorney’s Office December 01, 2009|
CORPUS CHRISTI, TX—Eleven people accused of trafficking methamphetamine were arrested today as a result of the efforts of a multi-agency investigation, United States Attorney Tim Johnson announced today.
Hector Yzaguirre, 51, Moses Leyva, 27, Carlos Amador, 34, Enrique Tobon Jr., 32, Leonardo Morales, 35, Jacob Maldonado, 39, Ronald Coulombe, 51, Manda Wyatt, 43, Felix Valadez, 30, and Virginia Mendez, all of Corpus Christi, were arrested today by investigating agents. The eleventh defendant, Ryan Gummer, 32, is presently in state custody. The nine-count sealed indictment, returned Nov. 19, 2009, was unsealed today following the arrest of the defendants.
With the exception of Gummer, all the defendants appeared in federal court before U.S. Magistrate Judge Brian L. Owsley in Corpus Christi today and have been ordered temporarily held in federal custody pending a hearing on the government’s motion to detain each defendant without bond pending trial. That hearing is set for Dec. 4, at 2:30 p.m. A writ ad prosequendum is expected to be filed to transfer Gummer to federal custody to answer the federal charges alleged against him in this case.
The defendants are all charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than 500 grams of methamphetamine between January 2007 through the date of the return of the indictment. Based upon the amount of the alleged methamphetamine involved, each defendant faces no less than 10 years and a maximum of life imprisonment, if convicted. Yzaguirre, Tobon Jr., Coulombe, Wyatt, Valadez, and Gummer are also charged individually with possession with intent to distribute smaller quantities of methamphetamine on specific dates during the existence of the conspiracy which carry either a mandatory minimum sentence of five years with a maximum of 40 years imprisonment or a maximum of 20 years in prison, upon conviction.
The multi-agency investigation resulting in the charges was conducted in Corpus Christi by the FBI, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the United States Marshals Service, the Corpus Christi Police Department and the Texas Department of Public Safety. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Julie Hampton.
An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
Defendants are presumed innocent unless and until convicted through due process of law.