Corpus Man Indicted in Undercover Firearms and Meth Operation
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – A federal grand jury has returned an indictment today charging a local man with possession with the intent to distribute methamphetamine and making a false statement on a firearms purchasing form, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson along with Special Agent in Charge Robert Elder of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
Authorities had charged Kevin Joseph Pacacha, 53, of Corpus Christi, on April 14, 2016, following his arrest the day prior. He appeared in federal court April 19, 2016, at which time the court heard that law enforcement had been investigating Pacacha since 2013. Law enforcement believed he had been dealing firearms without a license. Agents met with Pacacha to notify him that he needed to obtain a federal firearms license if he wished to deal in firearms.
The government also detailed the undercover investigation that commenced following the arrest of a firearms trafficker in Brownsville in 2015. According to testimony presented in court, the undercover ATF agent allegedly made five separate purchases involving 13 firearms from Pacacha. At the time of the final sale, Pacacha also allegedly requested to purchase a large quantity of methamphetamine. According to court records, the undercover agent and Pacacha ultimately agreed to a deal in which Pacacha would provide four DPMS rifles and one LWRC rifle to the undercover officer in exchange for a half pound of crystal methamphetamine and $2,000 in cash. Following the exchange, agents arrested Pacacha.
“The tenacity and courage of the undercover agent in pursuing a suspect who seemed to have no regard for the ultimate destination of these guns highlights exemplary actions by ATF's finest,” said Elder.
If convicted of the methamphetamine charge, Pacacha faces a minimum of 10 years and up to life in federal prison as well as a possible $10 million fine. The firearms charge carries and additional five-year-maximum sentence, upon conviction.
ATF investigated the case along with Texas Department of Public Safety, Corpus Christi Police Department Gang Unit, Border Patrol and the U.S. Marshals Service.
An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.