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June 25, 2010

CORPUS CHRISTI GROUP INDICTED FOR ALLEGED CONSPIRACY TO TRAFFIC CRACK COCAINE AND MARIJUANA

(CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas) – A four-count sealed indictment charging several Corpus Christi residents with trafficking crack cocaine and marijuana has been partially unsealed, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today.

The indictment is the result of a six-month Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF ) investigation conducted in Corpus Christi involving the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Corpus Christi Police Department and the Texas Department of Public Safety. The investigation lead to the return of the indictment on May 26, 2010. 

Lead defendant, Ray Santos Cavazos, 31, was taken into custody late yesterday afternoon and appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge B. Janice Ellington in Corpus Christi this afternoon. Co-defendants Jesse Roland Pompa, 52, Eric Daniel Sada, 22, Leopoldo Lopez III, 32, Roland Flores, 37, and Sue Ellen Zavala, 26, all of Corpus Christi, Texas, were arrested on Thursday, June 24, 2010. Cavazos and the others have all been ordered to remain in federal custody without bond pending a detention hearing set for Tuesday, June 29, 2010, at 10:00 a.m. before U.S. Magistrate Judge Brian Owsley. The indictment remains sealed pending the arrest of another charged but as yet not in custody.   

Cavazos, Pompa and Sada are all charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than 50 grams of crack cocaine beginning on Feb. 1, 2010, and face no less than 10 years and a maximum of life imprisonment if convicted. These same three defendants along with Lopez are also charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 122.3 kilograms of marijuana on Feb. 1, 2010, and face no less than five years up to 40 years imprisonment if convicted of this offense. Flores and Zavala are charged in a separate count with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 19.6 kilograms of marijuana on Feb. 25, 2010, and face five years imprisonment if convicted. Sada is charged alone in count four of the indictment with possession with intent to distribute 20.1 grams of crack cocaine and faces no less than five up to 40 years imprisonment for this offense if convicted.

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.

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