Latest news: 07-14-2010
Meth related deaths spur relatives to fight back through support
NM - The shadow of methamphetamine casts its gloom across Valencia County, and it is not an illusion. The same is not true of the "shadow people" that haunt so many methamphetamine addicts. "Every meth addict who has been addicted for a while has these shadow people in common," said Rio Communities resident Patty Gutierrez. "These shadow people are people the addict thinks are chasing them, the police, demons, anyone they've had problems with." Gutierrez was personally affected when she lost her nephew, John Christopher, to meth's ravages. She and her sister, John's mother, Rosie Bacon, became members of Mothers Against Methamphetamine, commonly known as MAMA, and formed the chapter that encompasses Valencia County called "Tears of Strength and Support," TOSS for short. The sisters formed the chapter after John's death to raise awareness about the drug in Valencia County.
Conviction of meth-cartel hit man noteworthy in drug war
NE - A reputed Mexican cartel hit man has been sentenced to 20 years in prison after pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine. Antonio Frausto, 46, of Phoenix had been charged with arranging to sell 5 pounds of unusually pure methamphetamine for more than $125,000. Frausto agreed to plead guilty in exchange for three other counts being dropped. Frausto had faced 14 years to life in prison and a fine of up to $4 million. At last week’s sentencing, U.S. District Judge Joseph Bataillon also said that Frausto must serve five years of probation following his release from prison. Frausto was tied to — but never charged with — the 2004 assassination of Mexican photojournalist Gregorio Rodriguez after the weapon used was found in Frausto’s home.
Former police officer pleads guilty to federal meth charges
VA - An ex-Pulaski police officer from Carroll County pled guilty Friday to federal charges of using and selling methamphetamine while in uniform and on duty. Christopher Franklin Bond, 32, of Austinville, resigned from the Pulaski Police Department in June of 2009 after he was charged with possession of meth and possession of a Schedule II Drug with a firearm, both felonies, on June 15 of last year. Bond pled guilty Friday in U.S. District Court in Roanoke to distributing more than 50 grams of meth. During the court hearing, Bond admitted to buying and selling meth inside his police cruiser, while on-duty and in uniform and in possession of his police-issued firearm. He faces a maximum sentence of 5-40 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $2 million when he is sentenced Oct. 4.
Narcotics Unit raids home, finds 36 "shake and bake" labs
MO - Authorities arrested two suspects after finding 36 "shake and bake" meth labs on the property near Union where the suspects were staying with an elderly couple. Franklin County Narcotics Enforcement Unit Commander Sgt. Jason Grellner said Kenneth M. York, 39, and Lisa R. Hoeft, 33, were arrested Friday afternoon after FCNEU officers and Union police raided a College Road home. Hoeft was charged with possession of chemicals with the intent to manufacture meth. She was scheduled to appear in court Tuesday, July 13, on marijuana charges. She has served time in federal prison on meth charges and already was under investigation, according to Grellner.