Stop Results in Two Arrests
Mark R. Trouville, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Miami Field Division, announced today that on May 1, 2005, members of the DEA Naples Task Force arrested two men pursuant to an interdiction stop which resulted in the seizure of 250 kilograms of cocaine.
Agents from the DEA Naples Task Force and the Collier County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) drug interdiction unit conducted an interdiction stop of a 1998 Peterbilt tractor trailer on northbound Interstate 75 (I-75) in Naples, Florida. During the search of the trailer, investigators located and seized two hundred fifty (250) kilograms of cocaine hidden inside the cargo onboard. The driver, identified as Roberto Martinez, 27, from Norwalk, California and the passenger, identified as Carnester Ellis, 42, from Victorville, California were arrested on federal drug charges and were arraigned at United States District Court in Ft. Myers, Florida on May 2, 2005.
The DEA claims this to be the second largest cocaine interdiction seizure in Collier County history with an estimated street value of over 10 million dollars.
Special Agent in Charge Trouville stated, “These arrests culminate yet another successful joint investigation with our state and local counterparts in Collier County, Florida. We take great pride in working together with these agencies as we strive to cease the flow of illegal drugs throughout every county in Florida.”
This is the second seizure the DEA Naples Task Force has had since the initiation of Operation “Flash in the Pan” in April 2005. This Operation targets the flow of drugs and money along the I-75 corridor of Collier County. Last month, the Naples Task Force, along with drug interdiction units of the CCSO and the Florida Highway Patrol, intercepted a vehicle which had trace evidence of marijuana on packaging material found in the trunk of the vehicle. The investigation led the Task Force to a residence in Naples where six hundred fifteen (615) pounds of marijuana was found, resulting in the arrests of three Mexican nationals who have since been indicted on federal drug charges.
The Naples Task Force is comprised of agents of the DEA and narcotics detectives from the Collier County Sheriff’s Office, the Naples Police Department, the Hendry County Sheriff’s Office, the Glades County Sheriff’s Office and the Clewiston Police Department.