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University of Texas lecturer facing drug charges

A University of Texas at San Antonio lecturer was suspended on Dec. 11 after federal agents allegedly discovered drugs and drug manufacturing equipment in her apartment and a storage facility she rented. The 51-year-old woman and her 25-year-old male roommate have been charged with manufacturing and distributing fake Adderall pills containing methamphetamine. Agents believe the pair distributed drugs in San Antonio and Austin. They are both being held in federal custody.

The undercover operation that led to the arrests was set up on Nov. 7 when the woman allegedly agreed to sell 1,000 Adderall pills to Drug Enforcement Administration agents for $3,300. She also allegedly agreed to sell larger quantities of drugs in the future. The woman gave agents a false name, but her identity was established by running motor vehicle check on her pickup truck license plates. Agents then placed the woman's Presidion Parkway apartment under surveillance.

Agents allegedly discovered the storage facility by following a van driven by the woman's roommate. A search of the storage facility and the van is said to have led to the discovery of approximately 8.4 kilograms of pills containing methamphetamine in an orange duffel bag and a machine that agents believe was used to manufacture the pills. A further 11 kilograms of fake Adderall pills and what agents described as a large pill-pressing operation was allegedly found in the woman's apartment.

The penalties for manufacturing and distributing controlled substances can be severe, but proving narcotics charges beyond reasonable doubt may be difficult for prosecutors even when the searches that led to drug seizures were authorized by a warrant. Experienced criminal defense attorneys may seek to have this type of evidence excluded when search warrants were issued based on questionable probable cause or the police officers or federal agents involved went beyond boundaries established by the issuing judge.

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