Drug Enforcement Administration


Steven Whipple, Special Agent in Charge

January 12, 2017

Contact: Sammy Parks

Phone Number: (713) 693-3329

Federal And State Authorities Arrest 21 Individuals Based On San Antonio Federal Drug Trafficking Indictment

SAN ANTONIO - This morning, federal, state and local authorities arrested 15 individuals without incident,
including San Antonio-based ringleaders Francisco Cerda and John Paul Flores, on federal drug charges stemming from a methamphetamine and cocaine trafficking investigation announced United States Attorney Richard L. Durbin, Jr.; Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent in Charge Joseph M. Arabit, Houston Division; and, Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent in Charge Christopher Combs, San Antonio Division.

A federal grand jury indictment unsealed today charges those arrested today, along with six additional defendants who were previously arrested, with one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine. The defendants, with the exception of Romero-Zelaya, Alvarez-Torres, Sosa, Robinson, Rios and Olivas, are also charged with one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine. Cerda also faces eight substantive drug distribution charges. Below is a list of the defendants.

In addition to the arrests, authorities have seized approximately 22 kilograms of methamphetamine, four kilograms of cocaine, and over $91,000 in U.S. currency attributed to this organization during this investigation.

Upon conviction of either conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine or conspiracy to distribute cocaine, the defendants face sentences of up to 20 years in federal prison.

“The success of Operation Tango and Cash and the corresponding arrests serve as an example of the exceptional teamwork among law enforcement agencies in the San Antonio region. This operation dismantled the activities of a dangerous criminal organization that was responsible for smuggling and distributing large quantities of narcotics throughout the State of Texas. The DEA will continue to focus our resources on drug trafficking organizations that oversee, coordinate, and facilitate the transportation and distribution of illegal drugs in our communities,” stated DEA Special Agent in Charge Joseph M. Arabit.

This investigation was conducted by the DEA, FBI, Texas Department of Public Safety, U.S. Customs and Border (CBP), United States Marshals Service, Bexar County Sheriff’s Office, Bexar County District Attorney’s Office, San Antonio Police Department, Live Oak Police Department, Seguin Police Department, New Braunfels Police Department, and the Texas National Guard Counter Drug.

An indictment is merely a charge and should not be considered as evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

Name                                      Age                              Residence       Arrest Date      Remains in Custody
Francisco Cerda                       43                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Jon Paul Flores                        29                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Pedro Sosa                               40                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Pablo Rios                               43                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Frank Montejano                     32                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Andrew Flores                         33                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Jorge Navarro                          32                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Edward Saucedo                      33                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Jesse Flores                              30                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Isaac Hernandez                      33                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Joseph Acevedo                      22                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Maribel Rio                              37                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Quintin Vega                           29                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Alan Ramirez                           26                                San Antonio    1.12.17            Yes
Joel Olivas                               44                                Arlington, TX   1.12.17            Yes
Laura Romero-Zelaya              38                                Houston, TX    10.4.16            On Bond
Jose Luis Alvarez-Torres         29                                San Antonio    10.4.16            Yes
Victor Lamont Robinson         29                                San Antonio    1.10.17            Yes
Frank Zepeda                           22                                San Antonio    1.10.17            Yes
Manuel Roel Castillo               40                                San Antonio    1.10.17            Yes
San Juanita Rodriguez             34                                San Antonio    1.10.17            On Bond

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