July 15, 2015 | 2:47 PM

Airport Workers Among 46 Arrested In Heroin, Meth & Cocaine Distribution Conspiracy

July 15, 2015 | 2:47 PM
BREAKING NEWS, Drug Busts, Police, Rand Paul July 15, 2015

DALLAS, Texas— Following a law enforcement operation that was led today by the FBI, the Dallas Police Department and the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI), numerous defendants have been arrested and are in custody on drug distribution conspiracy and related charges outlined in a superseding indictment that was returned by a federal grand jury in Dallas last month and unsealed this morning.

The 17-count superseding indictment charges one count of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute heroin; five counts of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute methamphetamine; three counts of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine; three counts of conspiracy to launder monetary instruments; four counts of money laundering; and one count of making a false statement in a passport application. The indictment also includes a forfeiture allegation that would require each defendant, upon conviction, to forfeit to the U.S. any property involved in, or traceable to property involved in, their offense.

Most of the defendants are charged with at least one count of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute heroin, methamphetamine, or cocaine. Eight defendants are charged with at least one count of money laundering or conspiracy to commit money laundering.

Four defendants, who are charged with conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine, allegedly used their positions of employment at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW), or contacted a person or persons who had a position of employment at DFW, to bypass security in order to transport kilogram quantities of a substance that was represented to be cocaine, in what they did not know was an undercover law enforcement operation. As part of the conspiracy, the substance that was represented to be cocaine was transported on commercial airlines flying from DFW to destinations in Las Vegas, Nevada; Newark, New Jersey; Phoenix, Arizona; Chicago, Illinois, Wichita, Kansas; and San Francisco, California.

The arrested defendants will begin making their initial appearances in federal court today. The 46 indicted defendants, most from the Dallas-Fort Worth area, include:

David Silva Garcia, a/k/a “Animo,” 29

David de los Santos, 51

Melvin Ray Williams, a/k/a “Black,” 35

Amber Vasquez, 31

Mia Vasquez

Israel Vasquez, 43

Jose Guerrero, a/k/a “J.D.,” 37

Francisco Gallegos, Jr., a/k/a “Panchito,” “Pan,” 32

Roberto Ramirez, 36

Gerardo Reyes, 34

Jason Eric Stotts, 43

Octavius Donnell Williams, 30

Javier Guerra, a/k/a “Chop,” 32

Tony Ruvalcaba, a/k/a “Lil Tony,” 38

Eusebio Martinez Ramirez, Jr., a/k/a “Sip,” 48

Eduardo Ruvalcaba, a/k/a “Lalo,” 29

Kenneth Johnson, a/k/a “KJ,” 27

Alex Gonzales

Noel Escamilla, 33

Adrian Miramontez, 33

Rolando Benitez, a/k/a “San Luis,” 33

Juan Ayala, 26

Juan Manuel Arellano, 34

Jose Amaya, 41

Funaki Falahola, a/k/a “Noc,” 33

Moniteveti Katoa, a/k/a “Vince,” 51

Mayra Lopez, 21

Luke Lamipeti, 30

David Lopez, 39

Jesse Alcala, 37

Juan Zuniga, a/k/a “Z,” 38

Corey Nelson, 38

Paul Salazar, 32

Demarcus Calhoun, 33

George Guerra, 38

Nicholas Mayes, 31

Rudolpho Mayes, a/k/a “Rudy,” 38

Albert Juarez, 38

Marcus Demon Hardy, 30

Rodney Tilley, 36

Molitoni Katoa, a/k/a “Tony,” 33

Vilisolo Lamipeti, 33

Janelle Isaacs, 40

Rosamaria Blanco, 37

Roberto Vasquez, Jr., 31

Ernest Olivarez, 33

A federal indictment is an accusation by a grand jury. A defendant is entitled to the presumption of innocence unless proven guilty. If convicted, however, the statutory maximum penalty for each of the drug trafficking conspiracy charges is life in federal prison and millions of dollars in fines. Each conspiracy to launder monetary instruments count carries a maximum statutory penalty of 20 years in federal prison and a $500,000 fine. Each substantive money laundering count carries a maximum statutory penalty of 20 years in federal prison and a $500,000 fine. The statutory maximum penalty for making a false statement in a passport application is 10 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.

The FBI, Dallas Police Department, and Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation led the investigation with assistance from the Texas Department of Public Safety; the DFW Department of Public Safety; the U.S. Department of State; the Drug Enforcement Administration; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; the Transportation Security Administration; the U.S. Secret Service; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Enforcement and Removal Operations; and the Fort Worth, McKinney, Mesquite, and Plano Police Departments.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys George Leal and John de la Garza are prosecuting.

#breaking now

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