ARIZONA WOMAN SENTENCED TO TWENTY YEARS IN PRISON FOR POSSESSION WITH INTENT TO DISTRIBUTE METHAMPHETAMINE
Jackson, Miss - Mercedes Sanchez, 34, of Phoenix, Arizona, was sentenced on April 2, 2015 by U.S. District Judge Henry T. Wingate to 240 months in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release for possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, U.S. Attorney Gregory K. Davis announced.
Sanchez was found guilty on January 15, 2015 by a jury after a four day trial in U.S. District Court in Jackson. She received the statutory maximum sentence for her crime.
Sanchez entered the United States on October 13, 2013, in Nogales, Arizona and was traveling to Atlanta, Georgia. She was stopped by the Richland Police Department on October 16, 2013 for speeding. A search of the vehicle revealed 47 pounds of methamphetamine with a purity of 99.8% concealed in the muffler of her Ford -F150. She was 8 and ½ months pregnant at the time and was also traveling with her 9 year old daughter. Sanchez had multiple border crossings into Mexico and then returning into the United States over a nine month period.
This case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations and the Richland Police Department. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Erin Chalk and Darren LaMarca.