Federal grand jury revisits indictments involving meth lab and illegal re-entry

Source: MGN Online

LAREDO, TX (KGNS) - A Laredo federal grand jury is revisiting several unrelated indictments, four of which involve a meth lab, illegal firearms purchases, and two separate illegal aliens, according to U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick.

Those indicted include Isidro Gonzalez, 44, Ismael Espinoza-Martinez, 37, Jesus Sanchez-Rico, 42, and Heriberto Castro-Escamilla, 45, who have all remained in custody.

According to officials, a Laredo Grand jury returned seven, one, one, and seven-count indictments.

The indicted individuals are awaiting arraignments from U.S. Magistrate Judge Diana Song Quiroga in the near future.

According to his indictment, Gonzalez is a resident of Dallas charged with importing more than 43 kilograms of methamphetamine as well as having a conversion lab in his home.

Federal agents searched the home on July 30th, 2019, where 13.5 kilograms of liquid methamphetamine, and two kilograms of crystal methamphetamine was found.

Among their discovery was a box of empty bottles which tested positive with meth residue in Gonzalez’s daughter’s room.

The liquid methamphetamine was transported from Mexico through bus lines and couriers that traveled through Laredo to the Dallas home where it was then converted it into crystal methamphetamine, allegedly.

If Gonzalez is convicted he faces a sentence of 10 years to life in prison and a potential fine of up to $10 million.

The investigation is being conducted by Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) with assistance of the Dallas County Sheriff’s Office.

The unrelated but similar indictments against Espinoza-Martinez and Sanchez-Rico report the two Mexican citizens repeatedly re-entered the country illegally.

According to the indictment, Espinoza-Martinez was deported a total of six times- in March 26, 2004, Sept. 19, 2006, March 4, 2008, Feb. 25, 2012, March 24, 2015, and Aug. 3, 2018.

Court records report that his removal in 2015 was due to a conviction for driving while intoxicated, however he later re-entered into the U.S. through Hebbronville without authorization on August 25, 2019.

The similar indictment against Sanchez-Rio reports he was apprehended by authorities near Laredo for re-entering the country illegally on August 24, 2019.

According to his charges, he had been removed from the country on July 21, 2009, March 10, 2010, and again on March 18, 2019 due to a felony conviction for aggravated stalking.

Both Espinoza-Martinez and Sanchez-Rio face up to a maximum 20 years in prison and a possible fine up to $250,000 if convicted.

The final indictment is for U.S. citizen and former Nuevo Laredo resident Castro-Escamilla who is charged for aiding and abetting others and for a false statement made in connection with the purchase of firearms.

The criminal complaint reports he purchased five AR-15 type semi-automatic rifles over the course of three months beginning on March 27, 2019.

According to the federal form for the purchases, he claimed were for himself when they were actually being sent into Mexico.

Castro-Escamilla faces a maximum of 10 years in federal prison and a potential fine of up to $250,000 if he is convicted.