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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Mexico

Friday, May 27, 2016

California Woman Pleads Guilty to Federal Drug Trafficking Charge in New Mexico

rosecution Arises out of Seizure of More than 11 Pounds of Methamphetamine

ALBUQUERQUE – Maria Isabel Ramos, 62, of Lake Elsinore, Calif., pled guilty today in federal court in Albuquerque, N.M., to a drug trafficking charge arising out of an 11-pound seizure of methamphetamine in Nov. 2014.

Ramos and co-defendant Monica Ortega, 39, of Riverside, Calif., were arrested on Nov. 18, 2014, after New Mexico State Police (NMSP) officers discovered approximately 5.05 kilograms (11.13 pounds) of methamphetamine in their vehicle during a routine traffic stop in Bernalillo County, N.M.  Ramos and Ortega were subsequently indicted on Dec. 16, 2014, and charged with possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute.

During today’s proceedings, Ramos pled guilty to a felony information and admitted that on Nov. 18, 2014, she was stopped by NMSP officers for driving with an expired license plate.  Ramos further admitted that, during the traffic stop, the officers found a duffel bag in the trunk of her vehicle that contained plastic containers of methamphetamine. 

At sentencing, Ramos faces a statutory maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison followed by not less than three years of supervised release.

Ortega has entered a not guilty plea to the indictment.  Charges in indictments are merely accusations and defendants are presumed innocent unless convicted in a court of law.

This case was investigated by the Albuquerque office of the DEA and the NMSP.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Presiliano Torrez is prosecuting the case. 

Drug Trafficking
Updated May 31, 2016