DEA And Partners Disrupt LA Area Drug Trafficking Organizations
14 apprehended in large scale enforcement operation
LOS ANGELES - Today throughout Los Angeles and neighboring counties, as well as in Arizona and Utah, agents from the Drug Enforcement (DEA) and officers from several state and local law enforcement agencies executed approximately 29 state search and arrest warrants. This enforcement operation culminates a nearly year-long investigation into several drug trafficking organizations operating here in the U.S. with close ties to Sinaloa, Guadalajara, and Michoacán, Mexico.
In the early part of 2016, DEA and collaborating agencies identified three drug distribution cells based in and around Southern California that were receiving cocaine, methamphetamine, and heroin from Mexican cartels, namely the Sinaloa Cartel. These local area distribution cells were redistributing the narcotics across the Southwest U.S. as well as locally to members of the El Monte Flores and Florencia 13 street gangs. Additionally, the distribution cells remitted the drug proceeds - typically in the form of bulk U.S. currency - back to the Mexico based sources of supply and have also been involved in black market peso exchange money laundering schemes.
“Domestic drug trafficking organizations working in close coordination with Mexican cartels and violent street gangs are ever present in and around the Los Angeles area,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge John S. Comer. “These groups distribute their toxic substances throughout our communities and DEA is committed to suppressing the drug threat as well as the violence associated with the illicit drug trade. Working with our local law enforcement counterparts, we can successfully target and penetrate all levels of the supply chain and effectively dismantle these criminal organizations.”
During the course of the investigation, agents and officers served search warrants at stash locations utilized by members of the drug trafficking organizations, collectively resulting in the seizure of $3,224,249 US currency, 394 pounds of methamphetamine, 151 kilograms of cocaine, 13 kilograms of heroin, seven liquid ounces of PCP, 919 kilograms of marijuana, 500 marijuana plants and 27 firearms.
The following individuals were apprehended as part of this operation and face California State narcotics charges.
- Julio Arrellano, 42, Long Beach, CA
- Raul Puente-Leyva,42, Los Angeles, CA
- Fausto Vargaz-Porras, 31, Long Beach, CA
- Norma Soto, 39, Baldwin Park, CA
- Miguel Luis Tellez Jr., 26, El Monte, CA
- Angel Alonso Parra-Ruelas, 23, Paramount, CA
- Omar De Luna, 27, Huntington Park, CA
- George Avila, 34, Santa Ana, CA
- Carlos Alfonso Delgado, 35, Long Beach, CA
- Ruben Deleon, 49, El Monte CA
- Sergio Miranda-Velasquez, 30, Wasco, CA
- Cesar Lopez, 33, Los Angeles, CA
- Alfredo Acosta Reyes, 28, Los Angeles, CA
- Marcos Efren Sanchez, 43, Whittier, CA
The DEA’s Los Angeles Division worked in conjunction with the following agencies during this investigation: Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, Downey Police Department, Huntington Park Police Department, South Gate Police Department, Simi Valley Police Department, Glendora Police Department, Fontana Police Department, Los Angeles Inter- Agency Police Apprehension Crime Task (LA IMPACT), Culver City Police Department, Long Beach Police Department, San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, Glendale Police Department, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, Orange County District Attorney’s Office, and the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office.