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Feds make weapons, drug busts
Wilson County NewsJuly 17, 2013 | 2,344 views | 2 comments
Agencies conduct predawn raid in Saspamco
SASPAMCO -- Two men face federal charges, and other suspects are actively being sought, following a multi-agency drug and weapons bust July 2. Officials confirm that the arrests were the result of an investigation that is in its seventh month.
According to a criminal complaint filed July 2 in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas in San Antonio, Jesse Matthew Gamez, 32, of Saspamco is charged with possession with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. This was after personnel from the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS), 81st Judicial District Attorney’s Office, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, U.S. Attorney’s Office, the Floresville Police Department, the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office, and more converged July 2 on his home on Underpass Lane off C.R. 128 in the predawn hours.
An affidavit filed by DPS Special Agent Cody Wallace indicates that Gamez ran into a neighbor’s yard, then returned to his own, when lawmen converged. In addition to the methamphetamine, which was packaged for resale, officers recovered a fully loaded .38 caliber Smith and Wesson revolver outside the home.
Once inside, officers recovered at least thirty other firearms -- including a Remington 20-gauge sawed-off shotgun -- a large quantity of ammunition, and narcotics distribution paraphernalia.
The affidavit also indicates that Gamez is no stranger to law enforcement, having a criminal history that includes a 2011 conviction for possession of a controlled substance. Wilson County Jail records indicate that his criminal history dates back to 2001. Gamez’s most-recent arrest was in 2012, when he was charged with unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon and two traffic violations.
U.S. Attorney’s Office spokesman Daryl Fields said that on July 5, Gamez waived both his preliminary and detention hearings and that he remains in federal custody without bond. If convicted on the narcotics charge, he faces up to 40 years in prison and a fine of up to $5 million.
Two other search warrants were conducted nearby, which yielded a second arrest. Henry Trinidad Jr., 38, of Calaveras was arrested at a home near the corner of F.M. 775 and C.R. 128. He was charged with possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine. Trinidad appeared July 8 before a magistrate judge, and was later released on a $25,000 unsecured bond.
According to Wallace’s affidavit on Trinidad, the suspect was present at the residence when agents conducted the search. Inside his home, they found a baggie containing a half ounce of methamphetamine, four marijuana plants, narcotics distribution paraphernalia, two .22 caliber rifles, three bulletproof vests, and a Bushmaster AR-15 .223 caliber rifle reported stolen from New Braunfels. Cash totaling $6,776 also was found in a safe inside the residence.
If convicted, Trinidad faces up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $1 million.
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