News and Press Releases

Complaint Unsealed Charging 22 in Second Phase of Investigation
Involving Conspiracy to Traffic Methamphetamine From
Mexico to Oklahoma City

November 1, 2012

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma – A federal complaint was unsealed today charging 22 defendants with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine, announced Sanford C. Coats, United States Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma. The charges unsealed today are the second phase of an on-going investigation of a drug trafficking organization allegedly engaged in a criminal enterprise involving the importation, transportation and distribution of methamphetamine.

Phase I: Federal complaints were unsealed and/or filed on August 10, August 17 and September 27, 2012, charging multiple defendants with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute at least 30 pounds of methamphetamine. On October 17, 2012, multiple defendants were indicted by a grand jury and charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute at least 85 pounds of actual methamphetamine. As part of Phase I, a total of 13 defendants were charged. They are each awaiting their next court appearance/trial and are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Phase II: The federal complaint unsealed today alleges that from early 2011 through August 10, 2012, the 22 named defendants were engaged in a conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute at least 85 pounds of actual methamphetamine. Specifically, it is alleged that Iran Juan Zamarripa Carrillo (“Zamarripa”), a defendant charged in Phase I, operated the drug trafficking organization from Corpus Christi, Texas, where he oversaw the distribution and sale of methamphetamine in Oklahoma City, from the Car Wash El Lagunero, located at 2418 SW 59th Street, and other areas in Oklahoma City. It is alleged that Zamarripa obtained the methamphetamine from individuals in Sinaloa, Mexico, coordinated shipments of multi-pound quantities to Oklahoma City using semi-truck drivers, and conspired with the 22 named defendants who served as distributors/purchasers of the methamphetamine for the organization. Reference is made to the criminal complaint for further information.

Early this morning, approximately 90 federal and local law enforcement officers executed arrest warrants in the Oklahoma City metro area, Tulsa, Agra, Lawton, Stillwater, Seminole, McAlester, and Snyder, Oklahoma. Officers from Oklahoma City, Midwest City, Stillwater, Lawton, Norman, Edmond, Agra and Fairview Police Departments, the Payne County Sheriff’s Office, the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office, as well as the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Drug Enforcement Administration, United States Marshal’s Service, and Homeland Security Investigations participated in the arrests. The following 22 defendants have been charged in Phase II of this investigation:

No Name Age Home
1 Edgardo Aguilar (aka "Arana") 27 Oklahoma City
2 Daniee Avila (aka “Brujo” or “Daniel Avila” or “Daniel Avila-Mendez”  ) 44 Oklahoma City
3 Felipe Esquivel Barajas (aka “Tacudo” or “Julio”) 30  
4 Francisca Bernal - Adame 45 Oklahoma City
5 Jorge Armando Cedeno (aka “Pichoca”) 33 Oklahoma City
6 Gary Cooper (aka “El Indio”) 42 Stillwater, Oklahoma
7 Gunther Lee Cooper  (aka “El Indio”) 21 Stillwater, Oklahoma
8 Pamela Davis 51 Lawton, Oklahoma
9 Ramon Ibarra Dominguez (aka “Monchis”) 37 McAlester, Oklahoma
10 Simona Gallegos (aka “Simona Juarez”) 28 Oklahoma City
11 Ismael Garcia, Jr. (aka “Tocayo” or “Pelon”) 36 Lawton, Oklahoma
12 Anthony R. Gonzales  (aka “Cholo”) 34 Snyder, Oklahoma
13 Theodore Leroy Henry (aka “Sombra” or “Shadow”) 53 Oklahoma City
14 Pedro Juarez 37 Oklahoma City
15 Bani Moreno (aka “Luis”) 36 Oklahoma City
16 William Lee Murphy (aka “El Indio”) 47  
17 Jaime Ortiz  26 Oklahoma City
18 Refugio Rodriguez (aka “Bro”) 42 Oklahoma City
19 Salvador Samaniego-Perez 31 Oklahoma City
20 Serapio Sanchez 26 Tulsa, Oklahoma
21 Genoveva Tello  (aka “Geno”) 27 Oklahoma City
22 Robert James Tuma 41 Agra, Oklahoma

As a result of today’s operation, 19 of the 22 defendants are in custody. Three defendants have warrants issued for their arrest and are currently deemed fugitives: Jorge Armando Cedeno (#5), Jaime Ortiz (#17), and Salvador Samiego-Perez (#19).

Image of OrtezJaime Ortiz Image of CedenoJorge Cedeno Image of PerezSalvador Samiego-Perez

If any member of the public has information regarding the whereabouts of these three fugitives, they are asked to contact law enforcement authorities.

If convicted, each of the defendants faces no less than 10 years and up to life in prison, plus up to a $10,000,000 fine. The public is reminded that a complaint/indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. Each defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial, at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

This case was investigated by the Safe Streets Task Force (Federal Bureau of Investigation, Oklahoma City Police Department, Midwest City Police Department, and Homeland Security Investigations) and the Drug Enforcement Administration. The cases are being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Leslie Maye and Lori Hines.


Return to Top

USAO Homepage
USAO Briefing Room
Justice 101
Join Our Press List
Project Safe Childhood

Help us combat the proliferation of sexual exploitation crimes against children.

Victim Witness Assistance

Making sure that victims of federal crimes are treated with compassion, fairness and respect.