Drug raid suspects advised of charges

Two men Tuesday were advised on identical charges from last week's drug raids, while Judge Mary Lynne James set dates for their return in Moffat County Court.

Both Luis Alcantar Burciaga, 26, and Ignacio Rodriguez, 56, appeared in court Tuesday free on bond posted after their arrest April 7.

Burciaga, accompanied by his own Spanish-language translator, was advised on charges of possession and distribution of a schedule II controlled substance.

The distribution charge is a class-three felony punishable by up to 32 years in state prison.

Burciaga's arrest warrant alleges he sold 3.5 grams of cocaine Nov. 4 to an undercover officer of the Grand, Routt and Moffat Narcotics Enforcement Team (GRAMNET).

The officer, wearing a concealed transmitting devise, allegedly paid $180 in "official government funds" for the drugs at Burciaga's Craig apartment, according to the warrant.

Also Tuesday, Burciaga, through his translator, queried James on what would happen if federal authorities detained him on a possible immigration violation.

Free on $5,000 bond, Burciaga could be deported "without regard to what's happening in the state," James noted.

The judge stressed she hadn't asked whether Burciaga was legally in the country.

James scheduled his case to return to court on May 13.

The judge set the same return date for Rodriguez, who also is charged with possession and distribution of a schedule II controlled substance.

Rodriguez allegedly sold 39 grams of methamphetamine for $650 to another GRAMNET officer on Jan. 28, according to his arrest warrant.

He is free on $20,000 bond.

Both men were arrested the morning of April 7 when law enforcement officers executed three search warrants at two Craig apartment complexes -- the culmination of a six-month GRAMNET investigation into what authorities called an area drug "organization."

Six adults face felony drug charges in Moffat and Routt counties related to the case.

Paul Shockley can be reached at 824-7031 or at pshockley@craigdailypress.com.

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