3 Angelina Co. meth smurfs plead guilty - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

3 Angelina Co. meth smurfs plead guilty

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Mark Helton (Source: Angelina County Jail) Mark Helton (Source: Angelina County Jail)
Frank Lopez (Source: Angelina County Jail) Frank Lopez (Source: Angelina County Jail)
Leia Lopez (Source: Angelina County Jail) Leia Lopez (Source: Angelina County Jail)
LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) -

Three Angelina County meth smurfs have entered guilty pleas for their part in a federal conspiracy case.

Records show Mark Dwaine Helton, 45, of Diboll; Frank Simon Lopez Jr., 30, of Lufkin; and Leia Renee Lopez, 34, of Lufkin; each pleaded guilty to possession of listed chemicals.

The indictment alleges the three conspired with five others to purchase pseudeophedrine from various pharmacies from several different counties, with the intention of it being used to make meth.

The practice of purchasing pseudeophedrine with the intent of it being used to make meth is known in inside circles as "smurfing."

Helton pleaded guilty to Count 33, which alleges he purchased the drug from Walmart in Lufkin on Oct. 12, 2011.

Frank Lopez pleaded guilty to Count 39, which alleges he purchased the drug from Walmart in Lufkin on Oct. 18, 2011.

Leia Lopez pleaded guilty to Count 26, which alleges she purchased the drug from Walmart in Lufkin on March 12, 2010.

Below are the names and current statuses of the co-defendants:

Harold David Neyland, 65, Lufkin: Pleaded guilty to two counts on Oct. 31.

Don Michael Campbell, 38, Lufkin: Pleaded guilty to two counts on Oct. 29.

Tabitha Leanne Hopson, 24, Corrigan: Pleaded guilty to one count on Oct. 30.

Laura E. Dixon, 35, Logansport, La.: Pleaded guilty to one count on Oct. 30.

Mark Dwaine Helton, 45, Diboll: Pleaded guilty to one count on Oct. 31.

Frank Simon Lopez Jr., 30, Lufkin: Pleaded guilty to one count on Oct. 31.

Leia Renee Lopez, 34, Lufkin: Pleaded guilty to one count on Oct. 31.

Melissa Denise Dixon, 29, Lufkin: Motion to continue granted.

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