United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner
Eastern District of California
Man Indicted for Possession of Methamphetamine that He Concealed in Tequila Bottles
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE||
Thursday, November 29, 2012
FRESNO, Calif. — A federal grand jury returned a one count indictment today, charging Rene Paul Diaz, 20, possibly from Salem, Ore., with possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute, United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced.
According to court documents, on November 19, 2012, CHP officers stopped Rene Paul Diaz in Fresno for failing to yield to an emergency vehicle. During the stop, the officers were given permission to search the vehicle. In the trunk, they found 15 1.75 liter bottles labeled tequila that appeared to contain a thick and soapy liquid. They tested a small amount of the liquid and forum it was positive for methamphetamine.
This case is the product of an investigation by the Fresno Methamphetamine Task Force, including California Highway Patrol, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). Assistant United States Attorney Melanie L. Alsworth is prosecuting the case.
If convicted, Diaz faces a maximum statutory penalty of life in prison and a $10 million fine. Any sentence, however, would be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.
The charges are only allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
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