Fayetteville, Arkansas - Conner Eldridge, United States Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas, announced that Juan Valenzuela, age 40, of Rogers, was found guilty on one count of Conspiracy to Distribute Methamphetamine, one count of Delivery of a Mixture or Substance Containing Methamphetamine, and two counts of Delivery of more than fifty (50) grams of Methamphetamine following a two day jury trial. The Honorable Timothy L. Brooks presided over the trial in the United States District Court in Fayetteville.
U.S. Attorney Eldridge commented, “I want to thank the investigators that worked so hard on this case and the jurors that took time out of their busy lives to see that justice was served. Children in Benton County and across the Western District of Arkansas deserve to grow up in communities free from illegal drug trafficking and the violence and other crime that comes with it. With the defendant’s conviction, another positive step forward has been taken for the citizens of the Western District of Arkansas.”
“Methamphetamine is a destructive poison that can cause terrible harm to the quality of life in our communities,” said DEA Assistant Special Agent in Charge David Downing. “Side by side with our local law enforcement partners, DEA is holding meth dealers accountable. Together, we are putting dealers where they belong – behind bars. Let this guilty verdict be a loud and clear message to any and all remaining drug dealers: you will be identified, you will be investigated and you will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” said Downing.
According to evidence presented to the jury, during the course of an ongoing investigation, it was learned that Valenzuela was selling large quantities of suspected methamphetamine out of his Rogers residence. On January 15, 2015, May 18, 2015 and May 22, 2015, Valenzuela sold over a quarter of a pound of methamphetamine collectively to an informant working for the DEA. A federal search warrant was obtained and executed on May 27, 2015, at the home where Valenzuela had previously sold methamphetamine to the informant. Additional evidence indicative of methamphetamine trafficking was located at the residence. Valenzuela was arrested at the scene and booked into jail. Valenzuela was indicted by a federal grand jury June 3, 2015. .
Sentencing will be announced at a later date. The defendant faces a maximum sentence on counts one and two of 20 years imprisonment, $1,000,000 fine, or both. He faces a maximum sentence on counts three and four of 10 years to life imprisonment, $10,000,000 fine or both. The sentence will be determined by the court after review of factors unique to this case, including the defendant’s prior criminal record (if any), the defendant’s role in the offense, and the characteristics of the violations.
This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Benton County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant United States Attorneys Brice White and Brandon Carter prosecuted the case for the United States.
* * * E N D * * *
Related court documents may be found on the Public Access to Electronic Records website @ www.pacer.gov