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Contraband
05/12/2011

Federal grand jury indicts 2 on firearms and smuggling charges

SAN ANTONIO - A federal grand jury indicted a man and a woman on Thursday with conspiracy to possess machine guns, possessing machine guns, and smuggling goods from the United States in connection to a undercover buy conducted in April 2011. The indictment stems from a joint investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI); and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). The indictment was announced by U.S. Attorney John Murphy, Western District of Texas.

The indictment charges Yadira Mauricio Ybarra, 36, and Willy Mendoza, 22, both U.S. citizens. Both are charged with one count of conspiracy to possess machine guns, possessing machine guns, and smuggling goods from the United States. During the course of the investigation, agents learned that Ybarra, has been living in Piedras Negras, Mexico for the last several years.

On April 19, agents arrested Ybarra and Mendoza after they paid $10,000 to an undercover agent and took possession of 10 firearms: four fully automatic machine guns and six semi-automatic assault rifles. According to court records, Mendoza claims the firearms were going to be taken to Mexico.

Upon conviction of conspiracy to possess machine guns, the defendants face up to five years in federal prison; up to 10 years in federal prison on each of the remaining counts.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark Roomberg, Western District of Texas, is prosecuting this case.

An indictment is merely a charge and should not be considered as evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.