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Goliad deputies hold 5 suspected to be in US illegally, discover 253 grams of cocaine

June 19, 2013 at 1:19 a.m.
Updated June 20, 2013 at 1:20 a.m.


A woman and five men were detained Wednesday on suspicion of being in the country illegally after two Goliad County Sheriff's Office deputies stopped a minivan they were riding in because of a traffic violation.

About 12:45 a.m. Wednesday, Deputy Paul Pearman and Cadet J. Catchings stopped the Dodge minivan on U.S. Highway 59 North near the Victoria County line.

Pearman talked to the woman who was driving and five men in the van and determined the men were immigrants in the U.S. illegally. The woman was detained and placed in the deputy's patrol car, according to a release issued by the sheriff's office.

Two of the men ran from the scene. Pearman chased them and caught one, later identified as Rigaberto Rodriguez-Martinez, 47.

The man reportedly resisted arrest and fought with the deputy. After the struggle, Rodriguez-Martinez was taken to the Goliad County Jail. The deputy found 253 grams of cocaine in a backpack in the van, according to the release. Officials valued the cocaine at $32,000.

Rodriguez-Martinez was charged with possession of a controlled substance, cocaine; attempting to take a weapon from an officer; and assault of a public servant.

About 8:30 a.m., Victoria County Sheriff's Office deputies located the remaining passenger. He was turned over to the Goliad sheriff's office.

The woman and other men were taken to jail and held for border patrol agents.

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