EL PASO, Texas — The U.S. Marshals Service is looking for a former Texas elementary school teacher whose sister and brothers were charged in a murder-for-hire plot linked to drug trafficking in Juárez.
Monica Velasco, 42, was indicted by a federal grand jury. She is wanted on federal charges of conspiracy linked to racketeering, drug trafficking, money laundering and conspiracy to kidnap in a foreign country.
Last fall, Velasco’s sister and two brothers were charged in connection to the 2008 murder of a man and his two daughters in Juárez.
"She was an elementary school teacher, a quiet lady and I guess she got wrapped up in all this with her family," said Deputy Scott Williams of the Marshals Service. "She's afraid of going to jail, but her family said that she is more afraid of going to Juárez."
In January, the U.S. Marshal Service’s Lone Star Fugitive Task Force nearly captured Velasco at a home on Safford Court in El Paso’s Lower Valley, but she left before deputies arrived, a U.S. Marshals spokesman said.
Velasco was a teacher at Thomas Manor Elementary in the Lower Valley. In September, she abruptly quit her job and moved out of her home on the West Side, the Marshals Service said.
That same month, Velasco's sister, Dalia Valencia, and her brothers, Emmanuel and Samuel Velasco Gurrola – allegedly part of the Velasco criminal enterprise – were accused of kidnappings for ransom, extortion, auto theft and drug trafficking.
The three siblings pleaded not guilty and are scheduled to go to trial in September.