According to the Department of Justice, a mother in New Mexico used her children to allegedly traffic a fatal dose of fentanyl to their father.
On Tuesday, the attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Texas announced that Magdalena Silva Banuelos, 46, was detained and accused by authorities of distributing a restricted substance that caused death. In May, after overdosing on fentanyl, Silva Banuelos’ lover and the father of her two sons passed away in a restroom at an airport.
In a statement, U.S. Attorney Chad Meacham said, “I feel for these children. To lose one parent due to the actions of the other is a calamity for a child. This defendant allegedly concealed fentanyl – a synthetic opioid 50 times more potent than heroin – in her own minor sons’ luggage. This drug has stolen too many futures and ruined too many lives. The Justice Department remains determined to hold accountable those who spread it.”
A mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years is imposed for the charge and if convicted, Silva Banuelos faces up to life in prison.
On May 31, the defendant put her two sons, ages 8 and 10, on a plane from Albuquerque to Dallas to see her on-again, off-again boyfriend — the boys’ father. Authorities said that a surveillance video shows the father meeting his sons at the gate, going through their luggage, and entering a nearby airport bathroom at 10:26 p.m.
And after overdosing on fentanyl, the man died a short time later.
The defendant “used her minor children to mule drugs,” as stated by the prosecutor, at a detention hearing in New Mexico on November 17.
Authorities claim that a string of texts between the deceased and the defendant that were found by investigators indicate that she knew about the fentanyl and trafficked it to him using their children. Inside the restroom stall where the guy passed away, investigators found a cosmetics container containing more than a gram of fentanyl.
The texts, according to the DOJ, said:
“ Hey you need to be careful,” she wrote a few hours before he died.
“Yes ma’am. Very slow and easy,” he replied.
“Just one and then wait you’ll see,” she said. “Just one.”
“Ok cool. Thank you. Will do,” he said.
“No passing out on the kitchen floor,” she responded. “Seriously you could od. No dying on the kitchen floor … It’s going to f*** you up!!!”
Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) acting Special Agent in Charge W. Guy Baker said, “This arrest and detention is yet another example of the devastation that fentanyl continues to reap on families throughout the country. The actions of Ms. Banuelos risked the lives of her minor children by concealing a highly potent drug in their luggage during a flight from Albuquerque to Dallas. The DEA will continue to work side-by-side with our state and local partners in investigating drug related poisonings and overdose deaths to hold those accountable for their actions.”
Watch the video report below for more details: