WORTHINGTON — A duo was arrested last month when a traffic stop resulted in the alleged discovery of methamphetamine inside a vehicle.
Law enforcement received a tip that Veronica Dominguez, 32, of Ogden, Utah, would be delivering drugs from Utah to Worthington and was scheduled to arrive March 20 with an unidentified man.
Shortly before 3 a.m. on the 20th, Dominguez was stopped for a traffic violation on Minnesota 60. The passenger in the vehicle was identified as Andres Espejo-Pascacio, 34, of Murray, Utah. Suspecting that the two were trafficking narcotics, the officer asked to search the pair's vehicle.
They agreed, and a K9 officer conducted a sniff search, alerting the presence of illegal drugs. Police discovered about three pounds of methamphetamine in the vehicle's rear hatch, along with two cell phones and a large amount of cash.
Dominguez and Espejo-Pascacio were both arrested and charged with identical offenses: first-degree aggravated controlled substance crime with two aggravating factors; importing controlled substances across state borders; first-degree drug sale; and first-degree drug possession. All of the charges are felonies, with the aggravated controlled substance crime carrying a maximum possible sentence of 40 years in prison and/or a $1 million fine, as well as a mandatory minimum of 86 months in prison.
If they are convicted, the two will be sentenced based on their criminal history.
After being informed of their rights, Dominguez declined to speak with police, but Espejo-Pascacio agreed to make a statement. He reportedly said he had thought he was accompanying Dominguez to visit her grandparents and denied any knowledge of the meth in the vehicle.
Both are being held in Nobles County Jail on bail was set at $250,000 with conditions or $500,000 without. They are schedule for their initial court appearances Tuesday morning.