FARMINGTON — One of the two fugitives who was charged in federal court with conspiracy to traffic methamphetamine and using a telephone to traffic drugs turned himself in to police.
A woman who is charged in connection to the investigation is still a fugitive.
Casey LaMotte, 28, turned himself in to a San Juan County Sheriff's Office deputy on Friday night. He was in custody at the San Juan County Adult Detention on Friday and Saturday and then transferred to federal custody, said Lt. Neil Haws, director of the Region II Narcotics Task Force.
LaMotte made his first appearance in federal court on Monday and his detention hearing is scheduled for Tuesday, according to federal court documents. In a phone interview last week prior to his arrest, LaMotte said he wasn't a meth dealer and denied any involvement in the meth dealing ring.
Fay Gordon, 29, had not been arrested as of Monday evening, said Elizabeth Martinez, spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of New Mexico.
Gordon is the only one of 29 suspects who remains at large after an 18-month undercover investigation into meth dealers in San Juan County which was made public last week, according to court documents.
LaMotte, Gordon, and 11 other people — 12 of whom lived in San Juan County — were charged Feb. 12 in federal court with conspiracy and other drug trafficking charges.
The suspects were allegedly part of a meth-dealing ring headed by Isaac Anaya, 30. The indictment against the suspects was unsealed last week after 26 people were arrested on suspicion of federal and state crimes connected to the undercover investigation. Two more suspects were already in custody at the time of last week's arrests.
All but one of the suspects charged in federal court will be held without a bond as they await trial. Martinez said judges often don't allow defendants who are charged with trafficking meth to be released on bond pending trial because they are considered a danger to the community.
Wesley Contreras, 19, Brandon Smith, 28, Ernesto Felix, 51, Yvonne Anaya, 38, and Curtis Murray, 50, were all arrested on suspicion of federal drug trafficking offenses last week. They all had detention hearings in front of Magistrate Judge Karen Molzen on Friday.
Molzen released Contreras on the conditions that he does not interact with the other co-defendants and that he complies with other court orders. Molzen ordered that all other suspects be held without bond, according to court documents.
Jacquelyn Robins, Contreras' attorney, said pretrial services, which interviews defendants concerning their personal history, recommended Contreras be released and federal prosecutors didn't object.
On Monday, Molzen ordered that Pedro Lucero, 37, Robert Valdez, 50, Bobby Hampton, 29, Isaac Anaya and Richard Archuleta, 32, be held without bond pending trial.
All of those men were charged with conspiracy to traffic meth and other crimes.
Julia Oros, 30, of Mesa, Ariz., who has been charged with conspiracy to traffic meth and other crimes in connection to the case, has not had a detention hearing yet.
It was not clear Monday how many of the 16 suspects charged in state court in connection to the meth investigation might have bonded out of jail.
Ryan Boetel covers crime for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4644 and email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @rboetel on Twitter.