News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 11, 2008
For Information Contact,
Special Agent Ramona Sanchez
Public Information Officer
(602) 664-5725

Southern Arizonans Indicted on Multiple Counts of Drug Conspiracy

JUL 11 -- (Tucson, AZ) – A federal grand jury in Tucson on July 9 returned a three count indictment against Walter K. Riedesel, 52, of Tucson, Arizona; Ruben P. Contreras, 44, of Oro Valley, Arizona; Michael W. Hamblen, 41, of Tucson, Arizona; Julia A. Relford, 52, of Tucson, Arizona; Ollie Shouse, 49, of Tucson, Arizona; Guilio F. Esposito, 29 of Tucson, Arizona; Joaquin Contreras, 51 of Tucson, Arizona; Miguel E. Martinez, 35 of Glendale, Arizona; Julio Regalado, 37 of Gilbert, Arizona; Alfonso Regalado 51, of Tucson, Arizona; Allen Ray Jones, 56 of Tucson, Arizona; and Mark Lawson, 26, of Tucson, Az for a violation of Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute Marijuana, Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana, and Aiding and Abetting, along with a Forfeiture Allegation.

The indictment alleges that on or about December 2002 through June 2008 that Riedesel, R. Contreras, Hamblen, Relford, Shouse, Esposito, J. Contreras, Martinez, J. Regalado, A. Regalado, Jones and Lawson conspired to possess with the intent to distribute in excess of 1,000 kilograms of marijuana. Six of the indicted have been arrested, and arrest warrants have been issued for the remaining fugitives: Contreras, Martinez, Jones and Lawson.

A conviction of the conspiracy and possession charge carries a maximum penalty of Life Imprisonment, a $4,000,000 fine or both. In determining an actual sentence, the presiding District Judge will consult the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide appropriate sentencing ranges. The Judge, however, is not bound by those guidelines in determining a sentence.

An indictment is simply the method by which a person is charged with criminal activity and raises no inference of guilt. An individual is presumed innocent until competent evidence is presented to a jury that establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

The investigation preceding the indictment was conducted by the Drug Enforcement Administration, Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division, Oro Valley Police Department, Counter Narcotics Alliance and the Marana Police Department. The prosecution is being handled by James T. Lacey, Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona, Tucson.