Federal and State Authorities Arrest Eight in El Paso Area Roundup
Today, federal, state and local authorities arrested seven individuals in the El Paso area based on federal drug trafficking and weapons charges. An eighth defendant was arrested back in June 2016. That announcement was made today by United States Attorney Richard L. Durbin, Jr., Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Special Agent in Charge Douglas E. Lindquist, and Socorro Police Chief Carlos Maldonado.
Those arrested today include:
Residence: San Elizario, TX
Residence: San Elizario
Adrian Garcia (aka “Nanis”)
Jesus Manuel Garcia (aka “Chumel”)
Residence: Clint, TX
Baudelio Marmolejo (aka “Barbie”)
Noel Salcido (aka “Tata”)
Residence: San Elizario
A three-count federal grand jury indictment, returned on July 20, 2016, and unsealed this afternoon in El Paso, charges the above-named defendants, as well as an eighth defendant--35-year-old Luis Armando Baylon of Socorro--with one count of conspiracy to distribute cocaine. The indictment also charges Baylon with one count of possession of firearms in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime; and, Ofelia Marmolejo with one count of maintaining a residence for the manufacturing, storing, distribution and using cocaine.
During this investigation, Baylon turned himself in to authorities on June 28, 2016, based on a federal criminal complaint alleging distribution of a controlled substance. That criminal complaint has now been replaced by the federal grand jury indictment.
The indictment alleges that from August 2014 to June 2016, the defendants conspired to distribute more than 500 grams of cocaine. The indictment also alleges that on June 22, 2016, Baylon was in possession of a dozen firearms in furtherance of the cocaine distribution conspiracy. The indictment also seeks the criminal forfeiture of Ofelia Marmolejo’s residence in the 11000 block of Philip Dr. in Socorro, TX, allegedly used to promote the drug distribution operation.
In June, federal, state and local authorities executed multiple search warrants as part of this investigation where they recovered a total of one kilogram of cocaine, 26 firearms and approximately $63,000 in U.S. Currency.
“Today’s arrests demonstrate the FBI’s commitment to work with the Socorro Police Department and our other great federal, state and local partners, to make El Paso and the surrounding areas, like Socorro, safer for our citizens,” stated FBI Special Agent in Charge Douglas E. Lindquist.
Upon conviction of the drug conspiracy charge, the defendants face between five and 40 years in federal prison. Baylon faces between five years and life in federal prison upon conviction of the firearms charge. Ofelia Marmolejo faces up to 20 years in federal prison on the maintaining a residence charge.
All of the defendants, with the exception of Baylon, remain in federal custody at this time. Jesus Manuel Garcia had his initial appearance in federal court this afternoon. The remaining seven defendants are scheduled to have their initial appearances tomorrow afternoon at 2:30 in front of U.S. Magistrate Judge Miguel A. Torres in El Paso. Detention hearings are expected to occur next week. Baylon is currently out on a $20,000 bond.
This investigation was conducted by the FBI and the Socorro Police Department with assistance from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), U.S. Customs and Border Protection, El Paso County Sheriff’s Office, El Paso Police Department, and the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission.
An indictment is merely a charge and should not be considered as evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.