More Arrests in Local Gun Store Indictment
|Sept. 4, 2012|
LAREDO, Texas – The last four persons named in last week’s indictment of a local gun store owner and his wife have been taken into custody by federal authorities, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today along with Jerry Robinette, special agent in charge of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in San Antonio and Melvin King Jr., special agent in charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
Atanacio “None” Gonzalez-Torres, 43, a United States citizen residing in Nuevo Laredo, was arrested on Sunday and will make his initial appearance this morning before United States Magistrate Judge Diana Song Quiroga.
Jose Luis Estrada, 23, Carlos Picazio, 30, Mario Rodriguez, 30, all residents of Laredo, surrendered to HSI and ATF agents last week and appeared before Judge Song Quiroga. Estrada and Picazio were ordered released upon posting $100,000 bonds. Rodriguez is scheduled for a detention hearing on Sept. 6, 2012.
The four are charged with conspiring with each other and with Robert Jacaman Sr. and Veronica Jacaman to acquire ammunition and firearm magazines for illegal export to Mexico. Specifically, the indictment alleges Estrada and Picazio acquired 9,500 rounds of 7.62x39mm ammunition from the Jacamans on Jan. 11, 2012, and took them to a waiting semi-tractor with Mexican license plates near an international bridge. Rodriguez allegedly picked up a total of 658 assault rifle magazines, for .223 caliber and 7.62mm rifles, on March 29, 2012, from the Jacamans. Gonzalez allegedly picked up 130 assault rifle magazines on April 4, 2012, also from the Jacamans.
The ammunition and magazines referenced in the indictment were intercepted before being delivered to Mexico.
If convicted of the conspiracy charge, the defendants each face up to five years in prison as well as a maximum of 10 years in prison for each of the illegal exportation charges. All charges also carry a possible fine of up to $250,000 on each count of conviction.
The case is being investigated by HSI and ATF with the assistance of the Laredo Police Department. Several police officers have been cross-designated as ATF Task Force officers working directly with the federal agency, assisting in the investigation of this and other crimes. Assistant United States Attorney Homero Ramirez is prosecuting the case.
An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until convicted through due process of law.