Border Patrol Agents Make Huge Pot Bust And Nab Sex Offender

Santa Teresa – Vigilance paid off in two separate incidents for U.S. Border Patrol Agents in the Santa Teresa area after they arrested a sex offender illegally in the U.S. and seized $188,368 worth of marijuana.

The first incident occurred on October 19, 2010, as agents assigned to the Santa Teresa Station were conducting line watch duties when they observed fresh footprints near the international border. They followed the footprints until they encountered an individual attempting to conceal himself in the brush. After agents began casual conversation, the subject admitted to being a citizen and National of Mexico without legal immigration documents.

Subject was arrested and taken to the Santa Teresa Station and entered into the Integrated Automated Identification System (IAFIS) identifying him as Antonio Flores-Malerva, a 55-year old registered sexual offender. Records showed that Flores-Malerva has an extensive criminal history to include: a conviction for disorderly conduct and soliciting a lewd act upon a child (under 18) in 1995; a conviction for lewd conduct against a child in 1998; and was charged with failure to register as a sex offender in 2003. Flores was also removed from the United States and sent back to Mexico on two previous occasions. Flores-Malerva is currently being detained pending prosecution for re-entry after removal.

Earlier that same day, agents conducting roving patrol duties observed three individuals carrying large backpacks north of NM Highway-9. As agents watched, a gold in color Chevrolet Malibu quickly stop at that location where it appeared to load the backpacks into the vehicle and then continued eastbound along the highway. Due to these suspicious circumstances, agents performed a vehicle stop on the Malibu which resulted in the seizure of 10 bundles totaling 235.46 pounds of marijuana. The driver and the contraband were turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration pending criminal prosecution.