Mexican Nationals Indicted for Methamphetamine Sales
FRESNO, Calif. — A federal grand jury returned a two-count indictment Thursday against Jesus Alberto Lopez-Retamoza, 31, a Mexican citizen residing in Kern County, and Hugo Lemus, 29, and Alejandro Lemus, 24, both Mexican citizens residing in Tulare County. The indictment charges them with conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine, as well as possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott announced.
According to court documents, over the course of several weeks, Alejandro Lemus and Hugo Lemus coordinated a large methamphetamine sale with a customer. On April 18, 2018, the day of the deal, Alejandro Lemus and Hugo Lemus met in Wasco with the customer, who was an informant. While the three were discussing the transaction, Lopez-Retamoza arrived and showed the customer a plastic bag containing approximately one pound of suspected methamphetamine. Hugo Lemus and Lopez-Retamoza then went to a residence in Wasco and retrieved an additional 10 pounds of suspected methamphetamine. When they returned to the meeting location where Alejandro Lemus was waiting, they were all arrested and the methamphetamine was seized.
This case is the product of an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Southern Tri-County High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force, the Kern County Sheriff’s Department, the California Highway Patrol, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Bakersfield Police Department, and Customs and Border Protection. Assistant U.S. Attorney Angela Scott is prosecuting the case.
If convicted, the defendants each face 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; the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.