Husband And Wife Guilty Of Running Interstate Meth Operation, Face $10 Million Fine

A jury convicted a husband-and-wife duo for running a South Dakota drug ring that transported methamphetamine from California and Mexico across state lines.

After a four-day federal district court trial, the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of South Dakota has announced that Anahi Plascencia Cardona (33) and Salvador Madrigal Jr. (41) were convicted by a jury. The Sioux Falls trial concluded with the conviction of the couple on one count for conspiracy to launder money instruments and another count for conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, each of which can carry a fine up to $10,000,000.

Madrigal Jr., his wife and their family members were leaders of an operation in South Dakota that trafficked hundreds if not thousands of pounds of meth to the state. The husband and wife team worked with some of their relatives who helped them transport, traffic, and sell over 100 pounds of meth, as well as hundreds of thousands in dollars.

They were all charged and convicted.

Madrigal Jr. was a case involving his younger brother Oscar Madrigal who had been found guilty in July 2022 of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances. He was sentenced 120 months in prison.

Rosa Madrigal made several cash deposits in different institutions as part of her family’s business to try and launder the money from drug trafficking. In August 2020, the mother was sentenced to 60 months in prison for conspiring to launder money instruments.

Maria Magana Zavala and William Hartwick were also implicated in the case after they made several trips from and to California and South Dakota. The married couple transported methamphetamines, marijuana and money. The couple was sentenced to spend 70 months in prison.

Federal court also sentenced and charged other unnamed coconspirators, who were low-level distributors.

Madrigal Jr., his wife and their children face stiff mandatory minimum sentences for their crimes. The minimum sentence for conspiracy to distribute controlled substances is 10 years, with a maximum of life imprisonment, a fine of $10,000,000, five years under supervised release and $100 as a special assessment towards the Federal Crime Victims Fund.

They face a maximum of 20 years imprisonment and/or a fine of $500,000, three years under supervision, and $100 as a special assessment for the Federal Crime Victims Fund.

The DEA, Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations and the Sioux Falls Area Drug Task Force conducted the investigations.