Arizona woman freed from Mexican jail

Sara Wright

Photo: Video by kgun9.com

Arizona woman freed from Mexican jail

CREATED May. 30, 2013 - UPDATED: May. 30, 2013

NOGALES, Ariz. (KGUN9-TV) - Mexican authorities have released a Phoenix-area mother who has been in a Mexican jail for more than a week.

Authorities arrested Maldonado after they say they found 12 pounds of marijuana on a commercial bus traveling from Mexico to Phoenix.

Our sister station in Phoenix, ABC15, reported their crew at the scene in Mexico saw action at the jail as of 11 p.m. as many eagerly awaited Maldonado's release.

Maldonado was released shortly after.

On Thursday, her attorney Francisco Benitez introduced a crucial piece of evidence for the defense: security camera footage showing Maldonado and her husband boarding a bus in Mexico.

This footage suggests that someone else brought the marijuana aboard the bus, the Nogales lawyer said.

Mexican authorities arrested Maldonado on May 22 as she and her husband were on their way back to Arizona after attending a funeral.

Gary Maldonado said he believes Mexican soldiers at the checkpoint wanted a bribe.

Troops turned the case over to the Mexican attorney general's office, the defense ministry said.

Maldonado was being housed in a women's prison in Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora while authorities decided her fate.

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