Peñitas woman faces federal drug charge

Docs: Trooper found heroin inside cookie box

McALLEN — A local woman faces federal drug charges after authorities found more than a kilo of heroin inside a cookie box during a traffic stop, according to a federal court complaint.

Jeanette Zamora faces potentially several years in prison for her role in attempting to smuggle the con-trolled substance.

Zamora’s arrest came less than two weeks ago in Weslaco by a Texas Department of Public Safety trooper, according to the complaint filed against her.

A DPS trooper pulled Zamora over July 11 for what appeared to be an obstructed license plate, the com-plaint read.

After pulling Zamora over, and during the interview, the woman gave the trooper consent to search her ve-hicle, a 2009 Saturn Vue, according to the document.

During the search, the trooper discovered a brown, taped rectangular package located inside a cookie box that was positioned in the vehicle’s backseat.

Local police were called, and a K-9 unit conducted a search of the vehicle. The K-9 alerted to the aforemen-tioned box of cookies, which alerted to the presence of narcotics.

Zamora, who was subsequently arrested and read her Miranda Rights, agreed to speak with authorities about her early morning trip to Nuevo Progreso, Mexico.

“Zamora stated that in Mexico she met with a friend of hers who worked in Mexico and was asked to take a bag into the United States as a favor,” the complaint read. “Zamora admitted that she knew she was smug-gling pills into the United States and was later supposed to receive a $500 payment after a second exchange.”

Despite this statement, authorities found 1.137 kilos of heroin inside the cookie box, not pills.

The 29-year-old woman, who has been designated a federal defender in her case, made her initial appear-ance July 12, before U.S. Magistrate Peter. E. Ormsby, records show.

Zamora appeared for a scheduled detention hearing Wednesday, July 17, where Ormsby ruled he would re-view Zamora’s case before determining whether to release the woman on a bond, or keep her remanded in custody.

The government has argued Zamora should be remanded into custody without bond.

A U.S. citizen, Zamora is scheduled to appear before Ormsby Monday afternoon, where it is expected the judge will determine whether to grant the woman a bond or remand her into the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.