Jury Convicts Man for Conspiracy to Distribute One Kilogram of Cocaine in Robeson County, North Carolina; Two Others Plead Guilty
SEP 04 -- RALEIGH, NC - United States Attorney George E.B. Holding and Rodney G. Benson, Special Agent in Charge (SAC) of the DEA Atlanta Field Division (AFD), announced that in federal court on September 1, 2009, a jury found RUBEN JUAREZ GONZALEZ, also known as DANIEL FERNANDO DELGADO, 43, guilty of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine, in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Sections 841(a)(1) and 846; possession with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine, in violation of Title 21,United States Code, Section 841(a)(1); illegal entry into the United States, in violation of Title 8, United States Code, Section 1325; and falsely claiming to be a citizen of the United States, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 911.
The evidence at trial showed that on February 13, 2009, GONZALEZ, RODOLFO ORDUNA BETANZO, known as “Rudy”, 35, and MARCO ALBA JACINTO, known as “MAURICE”, 29, traveled to a residence in St. Paul, North Carolina, to deliver one kilogram of cocaine in exchange for $32,000.00 to an individual cooperating with federal law enforcement, and an undercover officer that posed as a buyer for the cocaine. According to the evidence, GONZALEZ had driven BETANZO to St. Pauls, North Carolina, from Georgia, to conduct the drug transaction.
Numerous recorded telephone calls between the cooperating defendant and BETANZO, and the cooperating defendant and JACINTO arranging the drug transaction were entered into evidence. The evidence indicated that after GONZALEZ, BETANZO, and JACINTO showed the kilogram of cocaine to the cooperating witness and the undercover officer, the cooperating witness and the undercover officer left the residence then made recorded telephone calls to BETANZO and JACINTO informing them that they could not come up with the $32,000.00 for the cocaine. DELGADO, BETANZO, and JACINTO then left the residence and law enforcement initiated a traffic stop of the vehicle being driven by DELGADO, in which BETANZO was a passenger, and the vehicle being driven by JACINTO. The kilogram of cocaine was concealed in a hidden compartment in the vehicle being driven by JACINTO. Five cellular telephones were seized from the vehicle being driven by GONZALEZ.
GONZALEZ identified himself as DANIEL FERNANDO DELGADO, a resident of Georgia, and citizen of the United States. He was found in possession of a Georgia Driver’s License and Social Security Card identifying himself as the same. He was also in possession of $4,867.00 in U.S. currency. United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement determined that the man claiming to be DANIEL FERNANDO DELGADO was RUBEN JUAREZ GONZALEZ, a citizen of Mexico according to fingerprints and photographs obtained when GONZALEZ had been encountered on three prior occasions by Immigration officials after illegally entering the United States. During those encounters, GONZALEZ identified himself as RUBEN JUAREZ GONZALEZ, a citizen of Mexico, and he was returned to Mexico.
BETANZO and JACINTO pleaded guilty before United States District Judge Terrence W. Boyle on August 17, 2009, to conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine. DELGADO, BETANZO, and JACINTO each faces up to 40 years imprisonment, a $2,000,000.00 fine, and at least four years supervised release. All three men also face deportation.
Rodney G. Benson, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Atlanta Field Division stated, "This conviction should serve as a reminder to individuals who not only deal cocaine, but other drugs as well, in that DEA and our law enforcement counterparts will not rest until you are brought to justice. The dynamic level of cooperation between local, state and federal law enforcement agencies made this conviction possible."
In response to this case, Mr. Holding stated, “The men and women of law enforcement and the prosecutorial team worked hard to bring to justice this case. It is gratifying to see the jury supported this hard work and diligence with their verdict.”
Investigation of the case was led by the Drug Enforcement Administration, with substantial cooperation by the Robeson County Sheriff’s Office, the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office, the Fayetteville Police Department, and the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Assistant United States Attorney Joshua Royster served as the prosecutor for the government.
DEA AFD SAC Benson encourages parents, along with their children, to educate themselves about the dangers of legal and illegal drugs by visiting DEA’s interactive websites at www.justthinktwice.com, www.GetSmartAboutDrugs.com and www.dea.gov.