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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Texas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, October 26, 2016

San Angelo Man Who Used His Residence as a Multi-Pound Methamphetamine Stash Site Remains in Federal Custody

LUBBOCK, Texas — Benny T. Martinez, 37, of San Angelo, Texas, made his initial appearance today before U.S. Magistrate Judge E. Scott Frost on a complaint, unsealed today, charging possession with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine, announced U.S. Attorney John Parker of the Northern District of Texas.

Judge Frost ordered that Martinez remain in federal custody.  A preliminary hearing is set for November 9, 2016.

The investigation began when the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) received information that Martinez resided at a location that was being used as a multi-pound methamphetamine stash site, and that Martinez was responsible for the distribution of multiple pounds of methamphetamine, per month, throughout the San Angelo area.

A search warrant was executed at Martinez’s residence on Wilma Lane on October 21, 2016.  Martinez was located exiting the west bedroom of the residence.  The search of the residence revealed 2,188 gross grams of methamphetamine in the ceiling of the pantry, as well as two .22 caliber rifles, approximately $13,700 in cash, a vacuum sealer and food saver bags, a digital scale, rolls of plastic, and adulterants consistent with those used to dilute controlled substances.  The search yielded an additional 6,279 gross grams of methamphetamine buried on the north side of an outbuilding, in a small garden.

A federal criminal complaint is a written statement of the essential facts of the offense charged, and must be made under oath before a magistrate judge.  A defendant is entitled to the presumption of innocence until proven guilty.  The U.S. Attorney’s office has 30 days to present the matter to a grand jury for indictment.  The penalty for the charged offense is not less than 10 years or up to life in federal prison and a $10 million fine.

The matter is being investigated by Texas DPS, the San Angelo Police Department, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Tom Green County Sheriff’s Office.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey Haag is in charge of the prosecution.

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Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Component(s): 
Updated October 26, 2016