Tucumcari man pleads guilty to federal trafficking charge

Staff Report

Alexander Page, 27, of Tucumcari, pleaded guilty today in federal court in Albuquerque to a methamphetamine trafficking charge.

Under the terms of his plea agreement, Page will be sentenced to federal prison not to exceed 30 months followed by a term of supervised release to be determined by the court.

Page and his co-defendants, Michael Montoya, 36, Brian Acuna, 23, and Dianna Hernandez-Trujillo, 24, all of Clovis, were arrested in November 2013 on a six-count indictment charging them with trafficking methamphetamine in three New Mexico counties.

Count 1 charged Page and his co-defendants with conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine in Curry County between October 2007 and November 2013. Count 2 charged Montoya with possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute on Oct. 11, 2011 in Curry County. Count 3 charged Montoya, Acuna, and Hernandez-Trujillo with possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute on March 27, 2012, in Cibola County. Count 4 charged Montoya and Page with possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute on Nov. 7, 2012, in Socorro County. Count 5 charged Montoya with attempting to purchase a residence with money derived from a drug trafficking activity on Sept. 22, 2010, in New Mexico. Count 6 charged Acuna with using and carrying a firearm in relation to a drug trafficking crime on March 27, 2012, in Cibola County.

Also during today’s proceedings, Page pleaded guilty to a felony information charging him with possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute.

In his plea agreement, Page admitted that he was stopped for driving 85 mph in a 35-mph zone by a Socorro County sheriff’s deputy on Nov. 7, 2012, while traveling near Socorro, N.M. During a search of the vehicle driven by Page, the deputy found approximately 1,259 grams of methamphetamine in a hidden compartment in the vehicle. Page admitted to transporting the methamphetamine to Clovis, where the drugs were to be sold and where Page was to be paid for transporting the drugs.

Page remains in federal custody pending his sentencing hearing, which has yet to be scheduled.

Acuna pleaded guilty on June 26, 2014, to Counts 1 and 3 of the indictment, charging him with participation in a methamphetamine trafficking conspiracy and possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute. He also pleaded guilty to Count 6 of the indictment, charging him with using and carrying a firearm in relation to and in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.  In entering his guilty plea, Acuna admitted that on March 27, 2012, he and a co-defendant were stopped by police while transporting methamphetamine from California to Clovis.  At the time of the stop, Acuna and the co-defendant knew that a large quantity of methamphetamine was concealed in a secret compartment in the vehicle and that additional methamphetamine was in a backpack in the vehicle. Acuna also admitted that he had a revolver and ammunition in the vehicle for protection.

At sentencing, Acuna faces a mandatory minimum of 10 years to a maximum of life imprisonment on the methamphetamine trafficking charges. On the gun charge, Acuna faces a mandatory minimum of five years in prison, which must be served consecutively to any sentence imposed on the drug charges. Acuna remains in federal custody pending his sentencing hearing, which has not yet been scheduled.

Montoya and Hernandez-Trujillo have entered not guilty pleas to the indictment. Montoya is awaiting trial and Hernandez-Trujillo is participating in a judicial pretrial diversion program. Charges in indictments are merely accusations and defendants are presumed innocent unless found guilty in a court of law.

This case was investigated by the Albuquerque office of the FBI and the Socorro County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sean J. Sullivan and Jennifer M. Rozzoni are prosecuting this case.

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