News and Press Releases

Federal Charges Filed In Meth Trafficking Probe

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

June 4, 2012

WICHITA, KAN. – Seven men in Wichita have been charged as a result of a federal investigation into methamphetamine trafficking, U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom said today. Two other people are charged with immigration violations.

A criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Wichita alleges investigators seized approximately eight pounds of methamphetamine and more than $66,000 in cash from the traffickers.

The following defendants are charged:
Victor Casarez-Ramirez, 26, Wichita, one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.
Diego Beltran-Vega, 42, Wichita, one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.
Hector Medina-Hernandez, 29, Wichita, one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.
Cesar Hernandez, 34, Wichita, one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.
Israel Ramirez-Unzetta, 23, Wichita, one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.
Robert J. Slater, 53, Wichita, one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.
Javier Aldrete, 31, Wichita, one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.
Yazmin Duarte-Rodriguez, 29, who is not a citizen of the United States, one count of possession of false documents and one count of illegally entering the United States.
Andy Panameno, 28, who is not a citizen of the United States, one count of unlawfully entering the United States.

An agent’s affidavit states that:
– On May 26, investigators seized more than 461 grams of methamphetamine when they stopped a car driven by a defendant near I-135 and 21st in Wichita. The methamphetamine was in a potato chip bag on the backseat floorboard.
– On May 27, investigators seized more than 448 grams of methamphetamine when they searched an apartment at 305 E. Academy in Hesston, Kan.
– On May 27, investigators seized more than 2,600 grams of methamphetamine when they searched a residence at 914 Pinecrest in Wichita.
– On May 27, investigators seized approximately $56,500 in cash and jewelry worth $16,700 when they searched a residence at 6156 E. Harry in Wichita.
– On May 27, investigators seized $10, 280 in cash at a vehicle drive by one of the defendants at 3909 W. 31st South in Wichita.

Upon conviction, the crimes carry the following penalties:
– Conspiracy: Not less than 10 years and not more than life in federal prison and a fine up to $4 million.
– Possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine: Not less than five years and not more than 40 years and a fine up to $2 million.
– Possession of false documents: A maximum penalty of 10 years and a fine up to $250,000.
– Unlawful entry into the United States: A maximum penalty of six months and a fine up to $5,000,

The Wichita Police Department, the Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Hesston Police Department investigated. Assistant U.S. Attorney Mona Furst is prosecuting.

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