Polk County meth bust suspect, Lydia Santiago, could face life behind bars

6:02 PM, Feb 28, 2013   |    comments
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Polk County, Florida-- The alleged head of the meth operation busted last week in Polk County could face a maximum sentence of life in prison, the Department of Justice announced Thursday.

Lydia Santiago, 38 of Bartow, was one of seven people arrested after an 11-month sting involving street-level drug deals with undercover Polk County Sheriff's officials. 

See also: Polk meth bust: 7 arrested, over 50 lbs seized 

The mother of three was arrested on February 19 after deputies caught her driving her children with over three pounds of meth and $8,000 in cash in the car.

In addition to being charged with meth trafficking charges like Conspiracy to distribute, and Possession with Intent to Distribute 500 grams or more, Santiago faces a count for being a felon in possession of a gun.   

If convicted on all counts, she faces a maximum penalty of life in federal prison.  

Additionally, the Department of Justice says the United States will forfeit Santiago's vehicles and currency seized in the investigation.


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