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Man charged with meth possession, intent to distribute

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A man arrested during an Oct. 17 traffic stop in Roswell now faces federal drug charges after he was found to be in possession of a significant amount of methamphetamine.

Jeffrey Gerardo Nunez is charged with unlawfully, knowingly and intentionally possessing with intent to distribute 146.3 grams of methamphetamine, according to a criminal complaint filed in United States District Court for the District of New Mexico.

The complaint also states Nunez did combine, conspire and confederate to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine.

The methamphetamine was discovered when an agent with the Chaves County Metro Narcotics Unit conducted a traffic stop on a white 1998 Chevrolet truck at South Union Avenue and West Chisum Street Oct. 17, according to the complaint.

The traffic stop was conducted after the agent saw the vehicle had a cracked windshield and that a passenger in the truck — later identified as Nunez — was not wearing a seatbelt. Both the driver and Nunez gave the agent their driver’s licenses. The agent was also given the registration and title to the vehicle.

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During the stop, the agent detected the odor of marijuana coming from inside the vehicle. The agent requested consent from the driver to search the truck. The driver responded that it was Nunez and not he who owned the truck, according to the complaint.

The agent later told Nunez he detected the smell of marijuana coming from the truck. Nunez then consented to a search of the truck.

When the vehicle was searched a white plastic bag holding three medium-size baggies with a white, crystalline, rock-like substance resembling methamphetamine was found inside the vehicle’s air filter. A Ziplock bag containing marijuana was also discovered on the seat of the vehicle, the complaint states.

An agent from Homeland Security Investigations and another agent from Immigration and Customs Enforcement, also known as ICE, were requested to come to the scene to investigate. A field test was later conducted on the white substance.

The substance tested positive for containing properties consistent with those of methamphetamine.

Nunez and the driver were then transported to the ICE office in Roswell, where they were interviewed and the confiscated substances were processed, the complaint states.

In an interview, Nunez informed police that at 3:30 p.m. that day he had gone to O’Reilly’s Auto Parts Store to purchase parts needed to repair the truck when an individual he knows approached him in the parking lot and requested Nunez temporarily keep the methamphetamine for him.

Nunez said he agreed to hold onto the methamphetamine until the individual asked for it. Nunez admitted that he knew at the time that the substance was methamphetamine and that he was only planning to hold onto it temporarily, according to the complaint.

The driver, who worked for Nunez at a mechanic shop, denied having any knowledge of the drugs and said he was just test driving the truck for Nunez.

Nunez later confirmed in an interview that the driver did not know about the drugs.

Breaking news reporter Alex Ross can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or at breakingnews@rdrnews.com.