Cameron County DA’s Office, feds bust 2 in possession of Gulf Cartel cocaine

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A traffic stop conducted by the Cameron County District Attorney’s Office’s Special Investigation Unit resulted in the seizure of 134 pounds of cocaine. (Courtesy: Cameron County DA’s Office)

A Brownsville man and woman were arrested on Tuesday after the Cameron County District Attorney’s Office’s Special Investigation Unit discovered a total of 50 bundles of cocaine weighing in at over 134 pounds following an investigation.

Eusebio Saul Bueno-Martinez and Linda Jeanette Gutierrez were charged in Brownsville federal court with intent to distribute and possession of a controlled substance.

According to the criminal complaint, FBI task force agents and special agents began an investigation on Bueno on Oct. 6 regarding drug trafficking activities.

“Bueno was living in Brownsville, Texas where he was distributing cocaine on behalf of a Mexican Criminal Organization,” the complaint said.

On Monday, authorities were conducting surveillance on Bueno at his residence that morning when he drove to a Family Dollar located at 1601 E. Price Road where he met Gutierrez who was driving a white Dodge Journey bearing Mexican plates.

Bueno exited the vehicle and spoke with Gutierrez before entering the store where he purchased a Happy Birthday bag with a balloon.

He returned to the Journey and handed the empty bag to Gutierrez who was still inside the vehicle, according to the complaint.

She returned the bag back to Bueno who then placed it inside his white Ford F-250.

At 11:52 a.m., Bueno returned to his apartment with the Happy Birthday bag and balloon.

The next day, at 12:06 p.m., Bueno left his apartment, returned to the Family Dollar and met with Gutierrez again.

He parked next to Gutierrez, exited his vehicle and entered the Journey through the passenger side and then exited once more with a bag in his hand and re-entered his F-250.

The Cameron County District Attorney’s Office’s Special Investigations Unit conducted a vehicle stop on Bueno at the Exxon on Old Alice Road for expired license plates and a defective high mounted stop lamp, according to the complaint and a press release.

A K-9 unit with the Cameron County District Attorney’s Office’s Special Investigations Unit conducted a free air sniff of the exterior of the F-250 and alerted to the presence of narcotics.

“The officer conducted a search of the vehicle and found a plastic bag containing one wrapped bundle under the driver seat,” the complaint said.

Once under arrest, Bueno provided a verbal and written consent to search his apartment where authorities found several bags containing 49 wrapped bundles inside a closet, which weighed a total of a little over 134 pounds.

A presumptive field test of the substance inside the bundles resulted in a positive for the characteristics of cocaine.

As Bueno was being transported, an alert was placed on Gutierrez’s Dodge Journey, which was later stopped at a Brownsville port of entry as she was attempting to return to Matamoros.

During an interview, Bueno admitted that Gutierrez handed him the bundle found inside his truck and he had received seven more bundles from her in the Happy Birthday bag the day before.

He added that he gets paid $40 for every kilogram he transports and stores at his apartment and that he worked for a subject in Mexico known as “Negro.”

“Bueno receives a call and is instructed where and when to deliver and pick up the kilos from several people around the Brownsville area,” the complaint said.

Gutierrez also admitted her involvement in transporting bundles of cocaine to Bueno and stated that she suspects the cocaine belongs to the Gulf Cartel.

The pair are set to appear before U.S. Magistrate Judge Karen Betancourt in early December for their detention hearings.