Members of a prominent Borger family have been detained for conspiracy to distribute narcotics.
According to U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaa, nine individuals in the Amarillo area were arrested on various drug charges. Those charges were recently outlined in unsealed federal criminal complaints, Saldaa said.
Jose "Junior" Fernandez, 37, Aaron Fernandez, 26 and Thomas Joseph Salazar, 23, all appeared before a Magistrate Judge Thursday afternoon. They were ordered to be detained pending further court proceedings, a news release said. Each are charged with conspiracy to distribute narcotics. Those narcotics include cocaine and methamphetamine.
Additionally, Francisco "Frank" Fernandez, 43, appeared before a Magistrate Friday for the same offense. He was also ordered detained.
In the criminal complaint, the district court alleges that the men conspired to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine and/or five kilograms or more of cocaine.
Amy Fernandez, 43, wife of Frank Fernandez, also appeared before a court Thursday. She is charged for a separate complaint. She is charged with structuring, or attempting to structure, a financial transaction. She was ordered to be detained until further hearings as well.
The criminal complaint obtained by Pronews 7 alleges that amy structured currency transactions with one or more domestic financial institutions. According to the complaint, she purchased 39 cashier's checks in amounts of $3000 or less.
Four others are also charged in separate criminal complaints involving methamphetamine-distribution offenses. All were ordered to be detained. Those man were identified as Dustin Engler, 25, Raphael Garcia, Jr., 36, Leonard Anthony Scott, 47, and Tomar Embers, 38.
The U.S. Attorney's office has a total of 30 days to present its case to a grand jury for indictment. This is a continuing investigation being led the Drug Enforcement Administration.
"The maximum statutory penalty for the structuring offense is five years in prison and a $250,000 fine," a news release said. "However, if the violation occurred in conjunction with another violation of federal law or as part of a pattern of any illegal activity involving more than $100,000 in a 12-month period, the maximum penalty is 10 years in prison and a $500,000 fine. Each defendant charged with a narcotics offense faces a maximum statutory penalty of life imprisonment and up to a $10 million fine."
Court records indicate that Francisco Fernandez and his wife Amy own the Borger businesses of Franks Floor Covering and the Tan Palace.