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Maria Guadalupe Rubio-Mendoza Case

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1. A jury found Maria Guadalupe Rubio-Mendoza guilty of conspiracy to possess, with intent to distribute, one kilogram or more of heroin, in violation of 21 U.S.C. §§ 841(a)(1), 841(b)(1)(A), and 846 (count one); and possession, with intent to distribute, one kilogram or more of heroin, in violation of 21 U.S.C. §§ 841(a)(1), 841(b)(1)(A), and 18 U.S.C. § 2 (count two).

2. This case is set along the Southern border of Texas and Mexico. In 2013, newlyweds Maria Guadalupe Rubio-Mendoza (Rubio) and Ruben Luis Camberos-Magallon (Camberos), traveled by car from Mexico into the United States in search of a doctor to treat her believed terminal cancer. Rubio testified that she had traveled to the United States on several occasions in search of cancer treatment with no luck.

3.
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Before the trip, Camberos told Rubio he was taking her vehicle to be serviced for the long drive; instead, Camberos took her car to a drug organization and had the underside steal frame loaded full of heroin. The frame was resealed behind the front driver’s side wheel. None of the alterations were visible from plain view inside or outside the vehicle. Camberos subsequently retrieved the car and returned before the trip. The couple traveled north toward the Texas border. Rubio drove most of the trip. There were three cell phones involved in this case: Rubio’s pink and white phone; Camberos’ black personal phone, and Camberos’ ZTE phone. The ZTE phone was the only phone linked with the drug-smuggling
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