News Release
May 05, 2009
Contact: Daryl Fields
Public Information Officer
(210) 384-7440

Nine Arrested for Manufacturing Meth

MAY 05 -- (El Paso, Texas) – Joseph M. Arabit, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) El Paso Field Division, announced the indictment and arrest of nine individuals for the manufacturing of methamphetamine. Since May 2006, the El Paso Field Division (EPFD), Diversion Group has tracked the sale of Pseudoephedrine and other chemicals utilized in the manufacture of methamphetamine from local pharmacies. The DEA and partner agencies were able to develop a list of individuals suspected of purchasing Pseudoephedrine for the purpose of manufacturing methamphetamine. This large group of associated individuals referred to themselves as the “Circle.” The investigation identified numerous methamphetamine labs operating in El Paso, Texas and southern New Mexico. Some of these labs were highly mobile and could to be disassembled and set up in another location in short amount of time. During this investigation, the DEA and its law enforcement partners seized nine such laboratories.

On April 1, 2009 a Federal Grand Jury indicted Athena Miller, Priscilla Rasco, Cesar Sosa, Sandra Caro, Sharon Rasco, Wade Edwards, Daniella Davis, Jacob Hiers, Connee Rinestine and Kristin Edwards on the following violations; Count 1) 21: 846 & 841 - Conspiracy to Manufacture a Controlled Substance (Methamphetamine); Count 2) 21: 841 & 18:2 - Manufacture of a Controlled Substance (Methamphetamine) and Aiding and Abetting; Count 3) 21:860 – Possession w/Intent to Manufacture a Controlled Substance (Methamphetamine) on Premises where Children are Present or Reside; Count 4) 21: 802, 351 & 841 – Possession of a Listed Chemical (Pseudoephedrine w/Intent to Manufacture a Controlled Substance (Methamphetamine).

This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, Texas Department of Public Safety, El Paso County Sheriffs Office, El Paso Police Department, United States Marshals Service and the Immigration and Customs Enforcement. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney John Gibson.

An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent unless and until convicted through due process of law.