Greenbelt, Maryland – On May 14, 2018, United States District Court Judge Paula Xinis sentenced Fredrico Bustos-Andrade, age 40, of Moreno Valley, California to 82 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, for conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine, a Schedule II controlled substance.
The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Robert K. Hur; Special Agent in Charge Karl C. Colder of the Drug Enforcement Administration – Washington Field Division; and Chief Henry P. Stawinski III of the Prince George’s County Police Department.
According to his plea agreement, in or about November 2016, a confidential source (“CS”) cooperating with law enforcement was contacted by Co-conspirator A, using a Mexican telephone number, about a shipment of methamphetamine and heroin to Maryland. Co‑conspirator A told the CS that another individual would contact the CS about the shipment of methamphetamine and heroin. Co-conspirator A subsequently informed the CS that the narcotics transaction would be for methamphetamine only and would not include heroin.
Bustos-Andrade contacted the CS by telephone and stated that he was calling on behalf of Co-conspirator A. Bustos-Andrade and the CS spoke in Spanish and used coded language to refer to narcotics. Bustos-Andrade told the CS that another individual (later identified as Jose Alberto Pena, age 23, of Los Angeles, California) was going to fly to Maryland and provide the methamphetamine to the CS in Maryland.
On November 21, 2016, Bustos-Andrade sent the CS an SMS text message that contained Pena’s phone number and first name, “Jose.” Soon after Bustos-Andrade sent the text message, Bustos-Andrade called the CS and stated that Pena was in the area and would soon be calling the CS on Bustos-Andrade’s behalf. Bustos-Andrade also stated that the methamphetamine would be arriving in Maryland on the afternoon of Tuesday, November 22, 2016. The CS then called Pena, and Pena stated that he had just landed and would call the CS back soon. Later that day, Pena called the CS and confirmed that the methamphetamine would be arriving the next day, November 22, 2016.
On the morning of November 22, 2016, Bustos-Andrade called the CS and said that the methamphetamine had arrived in Maryland. Pena and the CS then communicated by phone and agreed to meet at a hotel in Largo, Maryland. Pena and the CS met at a nearby grocery store and then drove together to the hotel. Pena entered the hotel and then came back outside with a FedEx box. Pena put the box inside the CS’s vehicle and then entered the vehicle’s passenger side.
Agents arrested Pena and seized the FedEx box. Agents found within the FedEx box six bricks of methamphetamine wrapped in clear plastic packaging material. The six bricks contained 4,810 grams 100% pure d-Methamphetamine hydrochloride.
Shortly after Pena’s arrest, officers in Portland, Oregon conducted a traffic stop of Bustos-Andrade. Within Bustos-Andrade’s vehicle, officers found the cell phone that Bustos-Andrade had used to communicate with the CS.
Judge Xinis previously sentenced co-conspirator Jose Alberto Pena, age 23, to 70 months in prison, followed by three years supervised release, for the same offense.
United States Attorney Robert K. Hur praised the DEA in Portland, Oregon and Los Angeles, California, the Prince George’s County Police Department, the Montgomery County Police Department, the Washington D.C. Metropolitan Police Department, the Portland Police Department, and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection National Targeting Center, for their work in the investigation. Mr. Hur thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Nicolas A. Mitchell, and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney John M. Pellettieri, who prosecuted the case.
SOURCE: news provided by JUSTICE.GOV on May 18, 2018