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Contraband
05/16/2014

San Jose couple indicted following seizure of more than 90 pounds of methamphetamine

SAN JOSE, Calif. — A federal grand jury has indicted a San Jose couple on drug charges earlier this month after special agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) recovered a cache of more than 90 pounds of methamphetamine from their San Jose home.

Maria Anay Castaneda-Aleman, 32, and Emmanuel Navarro Gallegos, aka "Armando Roberto Espino," 30, were indicted May 14 on charges of conspiring to distribute methamphetamine and possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. Castaneda-Aleman was also charged with making available for use a house in San Jose for the purpose of manufacturing, storing and distributing methamphetamine.

An affidavit filed by HSI in connection with the case alleges that special agents responded to a house on Plateau Drive in San Jose based on a report that drugs had been discovered on the premises. The investigators subsequently found methamphetamine hidden beneath the home's stairwells.

According to the affidavit, the house was rented by Castaneda-Aleman, who lived there with her boyfriend Emmanuel Navarro Gallegos. Castaneda-Aleman was arrested May 3. According to the affidavit, the special agents attempted to detain Navarro Gallegos May 4, but he remains at large.

Castaneda-Aleman had her initial court appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul S. Grewal in San Jose May 5. She had a subsequent detention hearing May 9 and was ordered detained pending trial. If convicted, Castaneda-Aleman faces a mandatory minimum prison term of 10 years and a maximum sentence of life in prison.

The case is the product of an extensive probe by the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF), a focused multiagency task force responsible for investigating and prosecuting the most significant drug trafficking organizations throughout the U.S. by leveraging the combined expertise of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies.