Sixteen arrested in San Antonio-Del Rio firearms smuggling ring for Mexico gang
February 19th 2012 · 7 Comments
The San Antonio FBI Field Office has confirmed more people have been detained without bond after their arrest in a series of firearm and weapon smuggling operations for the Los Zetas Drug Trafficking Organization in Mexico.
Investigation by various law enforcement teams resulted in the arrest of 16 people earlier this month who were charged in a series of indictments returned by a federal grand jury in Del Rio.
Special Agent in Charge Crisanto Perez announced that two San Antonians, 32-year old Salvador Martinez, and Abigail Sabrina Trevino, 22, were charged with smuggling of firearms, including assault-type rifles, and illegal possession.
Charges against Cesar Antonio Cardona-Garcia, 22, of Ciudad Acuna, included the smuggling of six assault rifles.
Others charged with making false statements while purchasing the guns were Angel Charles Garcia, age 19 of Shawnee, OK, and Elisa Hernandez Ramirez, age 24, of Devine, Texas, along with San Antonio residents Frank Hernandez, age 23, Wayne Russell Dixon, age 53, Rey David de la O-Rodriguez, age 21, Jasmine Leeann Gordo, age 22, Amanda Lopez, age 24, Denise Ordaz, age 19, Jessica Marie Cortes, age 22, Louis Christopher Martinez, age 24, Margil Cortes, Jr., age 19, and, Patricio Nova, age 32.
The defendants immediately turned the guns over to others after claiming that they were the true purchaser.
“Between September and November 2011, Salvador Martinez, Abigail Sabrina Trevino and Frank Hernandez allegedly recruited individuals to purchase approximately 65 assault-style firearms, which were later seized by law enforcement, from San Antonio area firearms dealers,” the FBI stated.
The defendants, who remain in custody, have trial dates pending. If convicted they face up to 10 years in federal prison per count.
“This investigation is being conducted by agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Immigration and Customs Enforcement-Homeland Security Investigations and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives together with U.S. Customs and Border Protection, U.S. Customs and Border Protection–Internal Affairs, U.S. Border Patrol, U.S. Parks and Wildlife (Lake Amistad), Val Verde County Sheriff’s Office, Eagle Pass Police Department, Round Rock Police Department, Castroville Police Department and the San Antonio Police Department,” the FBI release stated.
A version of this column originally appeared in www.examiner.com.
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