Comments Off on Long Beach Man Convicted in Case of Historic LBPD Meth Bust

The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced Monday afternoon that a jury has convicted a 41-year-old Long Beach man accused of stashing more than 110 pounds of methamphetamine at his home.

Deputy District Attorney Philip Marshall of the Major Narcotics Division said that Carmelo Meza Bueno was convicted Monday of one count of possession for sale of a controlled substance.

Jurors, who deliberated for roughly two hours, also found true an allegation that the controlled substance exceeded 20 kilograms, according to the DA’s office.

L.A. Superior Court Judge Norman Shapiro set Bueno’s sentencing hearing for June 27 in Department 116 of the Foltz Criminal Justice Center. Bueno faces a maximum of 18 years in state prison.

The Long Beach Police Department discovered the stockpile of drugs while executing a search warrant at the defendant’s home on July 13, 2010. It was the LBPD’s largest seizure of methamphetamine in the department’s history.

During the trial, evidence illustrated that Bueno’s home was used as a “stash” house. Prosecutors described it as “akin to a warehouse commonly used in large-scale drug operations for distribution purposes.”

The wholesale value of the meth seized by police was $1.2 million. It’s street value was estimated at up to $8 million.

Commonly referred to as “meth,” “crystal meth,” “crank” or “ice” on the street, methamphetamine is a highly addictive central nervous system stimulant that can be injected, snorted, smoked or ingested orally, according to the Office of National Drug Control Policy.

According to a fact sheet, long-term methamphetamine abuse and addiction often causes anxiety, insomnia, mood disturbances and violent behavior. Many meth abusers experience psychotic symptoms such as paranoia, hallucinations and delusions that can last for months or years after methamphetamine use has ceased.

The creation of methamphetamine in makeshift “labs,” as well as methamphetamine abuse, is increasing at a significant rate in the United States, according to the same fact sheet. And American society is paying the price — literally.

“A study conducted by the independent Rand Corporation in 2009, based on data from 2005, estimated the economic cost to society of methamphetamine use at between $16.2 million and $48.3 billion,” the fact sheet states.

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