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Three Charged in 40 Kilogram Cocaine Delivery

JUN 23 (HOUSTON) - A two-count federal indictment has been returned charging two Houston residents and one Mexican National in a cocaine conspiracy, announced Special Agent in Charge Joseph M. Arabit of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Houston Division U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson.

The indictment against Shuntel Coco, 44, and Christopher Williams, 43, both of Houston, along with Jesus Esquivel-Ayala, 37, a citizen of Mexico, was returned today. They were all originally charged by criminal complaint last month, after which Coco and Esquivel-Ayala were ordered into custody pending further criminal proceedings, while Williams was released on bond. They are all expected to appear before a U.S. magistrate judge on the indictment in the near future.

The three men are charged for their roles in a conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute approximately 40 kilograms of cocaine. According to the charges, Williams had leased a storage unit where Esquivel-Ayala was to deliver the cocaine. On May 26, 2016, Esquivel-Ayala delivered the 40-kilogram load to the storage unit to Williams who was receiving it on Coco’s behalf, according to the criminal complaint. . 

Esquivel-Ayala and Williams were arrested on site. Coco had been monitoring the progress of the delivery and transaction at a gas station/convenience store parking lot nearby and was also taken into custody.

They all face a minimum of 10 years and up to life in federal prison, if convicted. 

The Drug Enforcement Administration conducted the investigation with the Houston Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Bryan K. Best is prosecuting the case. An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence. A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.

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