A woman carrying more than five pounds of fentanyl in her suitcase as she traveled through Kansas City, Mo., has pleaded guilty in federal court.
Evelyn C. Sanchez, 33, pleaded guilty before U.S. Chief District Judge Beth Phillips to possessing fentanyl with the intent to distribute.
According to court documents, Sanchez was traveling from Los Angeles, Calif., en route to New York, N.Y. Her bus stopped briefly at a Kansas City bus station on Aug. 21, 2018. After Kansas City police detectives interviewed Sanchez at the bus station, they became suspicious that she was not being truthful about her trip and purpose for going to New York. A police service canine alerted to a grey, hard-sided suitcase under one of the seats near where Sanchez had been seated on the bus, and she eventually acknowledged that that suitcase belonged to her.
When detectives searched Sanchez’s suitcase, they found two bundles wrapped in several layers of plastic, which contained a total of 2.4 kilograms (5.3 pounds) of fentanyl. When officers searched Sanchez’s purse, they discovered a false bottom to the purse that contained five separate baggies of cocaine that weighed a total of 5.64 grams.
Under federal statutes, Sanchez is subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in federal prison without parole, up to a sentence of life in federal prison without parole. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.