Federal and State Authorities Arrest 20 Individuals Today in Connection with Austin-Based Drug Trafficking Organization
This morning, federal, state and local authorities arrested 18 individuals in the Austin area and two individuals in the Houston area on federal drug trafficking charges announced United States Attorney Richard L. Durbin, Jr. and Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent in Charge Christopher Combs, San Antonio Division.
A federal grand jury indictment unsealed in Austin this afternoon charges 19 of those arrested with one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana. Allegedly, these defendants are responsible for the distribution of multi-kilogram quantities of narcotics since May 2014. The 20th individual, 30-year-old Julianne Maynard of Austin, was arrested this morning and charged by federal criminal complaint with conspiracy to distribute controlled substances.
Those arrested this morning include:
NAME AGE RESIDENCE
Harold Lee Urias, III (aka “Hero”) 38 Austin
Nancy Urias-Jaimes 32 Austin
Anthony Acosta 41 Austin
Aaron Anderson 41 Austin
Joe Beltran 40 Austin
Edward Cortinas (aka “Cort”) 58 Austin
Alfred Escobar 44 Austin
Virgil Fernandez, Jr. 57 Austin
Alfredo Garza 32 Austin
John Carl Garza (aka “Juanillo”) 50 Austin
Jesus Gonzalez 24 Katy, TX
Wayne Limon 44 Buda, TX
Jose Ortiz, II 28 Austin
Angelo Perez 37 Austin
Phillip Anthony Rivera (aka “AntDog”) 41 Austin
Seaton Scott Salazar (aka “Saul”) 39 Austin
Mark Selvera 45 Austin
Luis Miguel Villanueva 22 Houston
Paul Villanueva (aka “Ponka”) 49 Austin
Julianne Maynard 30 Austin
Upon conviction, the defendants face sentences of between ten years and life in federal prison. All of the defendants remain in federal custody pending detention hearings beginning on Friday morning before United States Magistrate Judge Andrew Austin.
In addition to today’s arrests, authorities have seized over four kilograms total of cocaine, marijuana, and methamphetamine; nine firearms, two vehicles, and approximately $50,000 in U.S. Currency during this operation.
This two-year-old investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Safe Streets Task Force comprised of the Texas Department of Public Safety, Austin Police Department, Texas Department of Criminal Justice Office of Inspector General, Travis County Sheriff’s Office and the Round Rock Police Department.
“Partnership is essential to the success of investigations, and we thank our law enforcement partners for their efforts during this operation that culminated in today’s arrests,” stated FBI Special Agent in Charge Christopher Combs, San Antonio Division. “Removing dangerous drugs and violent criminals from our neighborhoods is essential to ensure a bright future for our families. The FBI and its task force partners are committed to disrupting violent gang activity and improving the quality of life in our communities.”
Assistant United States Attorney Douglas Gardner is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.
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.