FLORENCE — Paul Matus, 41, stands charged with conspiring to commit two homicides and 19 counts of gang activity while being locked inside a state prison in Florence.

Matus was indicted by a Pinal County grand jury on March 25 for conspiracy to commit the first-degree premeditated murder of Hector Gamez-Valenzuela and Raymond Llamas. He was also indicted by the grand jury on 19 counts of participation in and/or assisting a criminal street gang.

Gamez-Valenzuela and Llamas are prisoners incarcerated by the Arizona Department of Corrections.

According to court documents, Matus is a “ranking member of the Mexican Mafia, previous conviction for manslaughter, conspired to kill two people and proposed killing families of those who cooperate with law enforcement.”

Matus was moved from Arizona State Prison-Eyman Complex to the Pinal County Adult Detention Center on Sept. 27. He was also arraigned on the charges that morning in Pinal County Superior Court before being booked into the jail.

Matus is accused of having a contraband cellphone inside the prison and conducting a criminal enterprise from inside the walls of the state prison.

A pretrial conference in the case is planned for Nov. 8. He remains in the Pinal County jail pending the posting of $500,000 secured bond.

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