Drug Enforcement Administration

San Diego

Karen I. Flowers, Special Agent in Charge

September 19, 2012

Contact: Kameron Korte

Phone Number: (571) 324-6204

Operation “Cruel Summer” Nets 46 Arrests

Six Month Operation is Concluded

SAN DIEGO, CA - Forty six people are in custody following Operation Cruel Summer in the Fallbrook area of San Diego County, 34 of those including a juvenile were arrested in today's sweep. Today's sweep was conducted from 6:00 a.m. to noon. The Drug Enforcement (DEA) Violent Trafficker Team, (VTT) in conjunction with the San Diego County Sheriff's Department, and other partner agencies served 38 arrest warrants and eight search warrants in Fallbrook, Bonsall, Rainbow, Oceanside and San Bernardino County. Evidence seized during the entire operation includes: 40 pounds of marijuana, 11 ounces of heroin, 31 pounds of cocaine, 25 pounds of methamphetamine, 38 firearms, and over $165,000 in U.S. currency.

Operation Cruel Summer was launched in March 2012 in response to numerous citizen complaints. During the crackdown, undercover DEA agents and sheriff's deputies conducted more than 50 "buy-walk" operations. They bought methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine and firearms from the suspects. Thirty eight people were identified as part of the drug trafficking and firearms operation culminating in a takedown this morning.

There were 246 sheriff's deputies and federal agents who took part in today's takedown. Other agencies involved in the investigation include, San Diego Sheriff’s Department, U.S. Attorney’s Office, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, U.S. Border Patrol, U.S. Marshals Service, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, San Diego County Probation, San Diego County District Attorney's Office, State of California Parole, and the Internal Revenue Service.

The following people were arrested as part of Operation Cruel Summer:

Sims, Jessie Sr., 50 - Fallbrook Vasquez, Cynthia, 44 - Fallbrook
Sims, Joseph, 32 - Fallbrook Mclean, Ariel, 21 - Fallbrook
Lupercio, Carlos, 28 - Fallbrook Banks, Richard, 46 - Fallbrook
Wyman, Stephen, 32 - Fallbrook Bolding, Jesse, 22 - Fallbrook
Lindsey, Ronald, 27 - Fallbrook Escabedo, Raul, 23 - Fallbrook
Gonzales, Juan, 45 - Fallbrook Rios, Gustavo, 38, - Fallbrook
Artiega, Eduardo, 23 - Fallbrook Wood, Brok, 21 - Fallbrook
Belleville, Joshua, 21 - Fallbrook Fore, Daniel, 44 - Fallbrook
Bowling, Kent, 65 - Fallbrook Vargas, Maria, 21 - Fallbrook
Youssi, Justin, 21 - Fallbrook Fountain, Mark, 50 - Fallbrook
Rowe, Gerald, 21 - Oceanside Costa, Bethany, 22 - Vista
Bruno, James, 25 - Fallbrook Lupercio, Daniel, 26 - Fallbrook
Santacruz, Eduardo, 29 - Fallbrook Prather, Oscar, 43 - Fallbrook
Ochoa, Michael, 39 - Fallbrook Hernandez, Cesar, 36 - Fallbrook
Zamudio, Jose, 44 - Fallbrook Monje, Isidro, 58 - Fallbrook
Harris, Robert, 50 - Fallbrook Belleville, Nathan, 29 - Fallbrook
Halkias, Channing, 38 - Fallbrook

Those arrested face federal charges of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance and could face other state charges. Suspects in this investigation face varied sentences depending on their criminal background including probation to 25 years in prison.

The defendants facing state charges are expected to be arraigned on Wednesday, September 19th at 1:30 p.m. in Department 14 at the Superior Court's North County Regional Center in Vista. For information on the court appearance of those arrested on federal charges, please contact the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of California.

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