LOS LUNAS, N.M. (KRQE) – A Los Lunas man was sentenced to ten years in prison for drug and firearms charges on May 31. Esteban Renteria III, 26, pleaded guilty on July 26, 2021 to possession with intent to distribute 40 grams and more of fentanyl and possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking in a crime.

According to the plea agreement and court records; a New Mexico State Police Officer pulled over Renteria on December 31, 2020, after seeing him driving 102 mph on I-40 in Cibola County. During the traffic stop, Renteria was arrested after the officer learned he had two active arrest warrants. During an inventory of Renteria’s vehicle the officer found a backpack with $12,012 in cash and a loaded handgun. After getting a search warrant, investigators also found 184 grams of fentanyl.

Renteria admitted that he intended to sell the fentanyl, and the cash in the backpack was from selling drugs. He also said the firearm was used to protect his drug business.