Comments Off on Torrie M. Savunen, 40, of Odessa, arrested for manufacturing Methamphetamine

ODESSA, N.Y.  – An Odessa woman is behind bars Wednesday night and charged with manufacturing meth.

40-year-old, Torrie M. Savunen was arrested on Wednesday by a Schulyer County Sheriff’s Deputy following a traffic stop.

During the stop, officers say they found lab equipment, as well as items needed to make meth.

Savunen was arraigned in Montour Falls court, and sent to jail on $5,000 bail.



Comments Off on Methamphetamine, often mixed with opioids, leads spike in Spokane County drug overdose deaths

Spokane police haven’t busted a methamphetamine lab in at least three years, almost the same amount of time “Breaking Bad” and its meth-cooking protagonist have been off the air. But methamphetamine is contributing to more drug overdose deaths than any other drug in Spokane County, and that number rose significantly in 2016.

That’s according to a Spokane County Medical Examiner’s office report on 2016 deaths released Tuesday, which found an increase from 29 fatal overdoses involving methamphetamine in 2015 to 49 in 2016, a 69 percent jump.

Overall, accidental overdoses in Spokane County rose from 82 in 2015 to 115 last year.

Fatal heroin and opioid overdoses are the usual focus of conversations about drug use and deaths, but methamphetamine is a rarely-discussed contributor to soaring overdose death rates in Washington.

In many cases, public health officials say that’s because people are using opioids in combination with methamphetamine.

Methamphetamine is a stimulant and can cause fatal overdoses by putting strain on their heart or circulatory system. The drug elevates core body temperature and usually kills by cardiac failure.

Fatal overdoses on opioids are more common. Those drugs are depressants that can suppress breathing, leading to fatal respiratory failure.

“When you do both at the same time you compound the effects of both drugs. One doesn’t counteract the other,” said Mike Lopez, medical services manager for the Spokane Fire Department.

The medical examiner report says how many times a drug was listed on death certificates in 2016, but it doesn’t provide a clear picture of how people are using those drugs.

People often overdose and die with more than one drug in their system, so without the details of individual death certificates, it’s impossible to say if most local methamphetamine overdoses also involved an opioid. The medical examiner’s office had not responded to a request to provide more detailed data by Wednesday evening.

A 2015 survey by the University of Washington’s Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute of 22 Spokane needle-exchange users found 91 percent had used meth in the past three months, and nearly one-third had used both methamphetamine and heroin together.

Statewide, it’s clear people are mixing the two. The Washington Department of Health collects data on fatal opioid overdoses, which lists every drug found on individual death certificates.

Though it’s not an opioid, methamphetamine was the second-most commonly listed drug in 2015, contributing to 155 opioid overdoses. In 2010, methamphetamine was present in just 44 opioid overdoses and ranked well behind common painkillers like oxycodone.

Rates of people using only methamphetamine also appear to be going up, said Caleb Banta-Green, the principal research scientist for the institute. Overdose deaths have increased in King County after holding steady for nearly a decade, he said, and that appears to be a trend across the state.

The institute is releasing a report on rising methamphetamine use in Washington in a few weeks.

As public attention has been focused on responding to an opioid overdose epidemic, there’s less talk about methamphetamine.

After a crackdown on the cold medications used to make the drug in the United States, production shifted largely to Mexico.

Use declined for a few years, Banta-Green said. But its gradual increase over the past few years has gone largely unnoticed because it doesn’t come with the dramatic spectacle of police raiding meth labs.

Crackdowns on prescription pain medication over the past decade have made it harder for people addicted to opioids to get drugs legally. In response, drug traffickers used the same routes they set up for methamphetamine to bring more heroin into the country, Banta-Green said.

Treatment programs created in response to soaring opioid overdose deaths often have few options for people who also use methamphetamine, benzodiazepines and other drugs, Banta-Green said. In many cases, providers refuse to treat them at all, “which really means we’re only saying we only want to treat half of heroin users,” he said.

The state health department publishes data on opioid deaths, but not methamphetamine overdoses.

“There’s never been a statewide discussion about it,” Banta-Green said.

This article was updated on April 27, 2017 to clarify that the Washington Department of Health does not publish data on methamphetamine overdoses. The department does collect data on all drug overdoses.


Comments Off on Millions of speed pills, crystal Methamphetamine seized in Chiang Rai

CHIANG RAI – Two men were arrested and 4 million speed pills and 149kg of crystal methamphetamine seized after a car chase in Chiang Saen district in the early hours of Thursday.

Police in Chiang Rai nabbed two drug runners and a huge haul of drugs after an early morning high speed chase in the northern city.

Over four million speed pills and 149kg of crystal meth were seized by officers from the narcotics suppression division who spotted two suspect vehicles on the Chiang Saen-Chiang Khong road at around 3am on Thursday morning.

Officers attempted to stop the vehicles for a routine check, however, their drivers had other ideas about letting cops see their cargo resulting in a high speed chase that ended with two men fleeing into the Mekong river leaving two others behind who were soon wearing bracelets.

The two suspects, both reported by Thai media to be Hmong tribesmen, have been transferred to Bangkok for interrogation.


CHIANG RAI – Two men were arrested and 4 million speed pills and 149kg of crystal methamphetamine seized after a car chase in Chiang Saen district in the early hours of Thursday.

A team of narcotics suppression police spotted two vehicles, a Chevrolet and a Toyota, travelling along the Chiang Saen-Chiang Khong road around 3am. They signaled the vehicles to stop for a search. The drivers instead sped off.

The officers pursued them, initially firing warning shots into the air. A police vehicle finally managed to get in front of them and blocked the way near the Mekong River in tambon Wiang.

Two men in one of the vehicles quickly jumped into the river and escaped, leaving the two other men to be arrested.

A search found several packages containing a total of 4,016,00 speed pills and 149kg of crystal methamphetamine in the back of the Chevrolet Trailblazer, which had Pathum Thani licence plates. The Toyota car, with Chiang Rai plates, was also seized, Thai media reported.

The two apprehended suspects, identified as Yafatee Sae Yang and Sakchai Sae Yang, both Hmong tribesmen, were being taken to the Narcotics Suppression Bureau in Bangkok for interrogation.


Comments Off on The new frontier for Methamphetamine: The Islamic marshlands of Bangladesh

Rural Bangladesh is a sleepy, swampy sort of place.

At dawn, moms in burqas emerge from huts to scatter chicken feed in the dirt. On hot days, farm boys snooze under ficus trees. The evenings are punctuated by prayer calls that warble over the rice paddies.

Life here feels slow. And yet, improbable as it may seem, these Islamic marshlands have become one of the hottest emerging meth markets on the planet.

Bangladesh is the latest Asian nation to fall under the spell of “ya ba,” little pills made from caffeine and meth. The tablets, which look like baby aspirin, are dyed pink and smell like cake frosting.

In the past decade, meth pills flowing into Bangladesh went from a trickle to a tsunami. Just nine years back, police were seizing only about 35,000 pills per year. You could comfortably fit all of that inside a backpack.

Annual seizures have since swelled to 29 million pills, an increase of more than 80,000 percent. That’s enough meth to tweak out everyone in Texas — with plenty left over for Nebraska.

Bangladeshi authorities hardly know what to do with the mountains of meth piling up in their evidence rooms. In the far eastern borderlands — along the country’s busiest trafficking routes — anti-drug squads must dispose of their seized meth creatively.

“We have a system,” says Lt. Col. Abuzar Al Zahid, a bear-like man who commands a Border Guard Force base in a port city called Teknaf. “I tell my men to dig a hole.”

The colonel’s subordinates will dig a deep pit near the station. Then he’ll order them to dump buckets of hot pink pills down the hole.

Of course, you can’t just leave millions of pills buried in the dirt. That’s a tempting target for any addict with a shovel. Before the officers fill in the hole with dirt, Abuzar makes them round up all of the station’s confiscated whiskey — another illicit drug in Islamic Bangladesh. The men then smash hundreds of bottles and douse the meth in booze.

The result: a viscous, pink slurry of intoxicants, seeping into the soil. The colonel regards this spectacle as a morale booster.

“When they’re destroying these drugs, I want our soldiers to feel hatred,” he says. “It’s a psychological operation to make them hate this drug.”

How did this place, so languid and pious, get transfixed by dirty speed? At a glance, this phenomenon is baffling. Think like a meth trafficker, however, and it starts to makes sense.

Bangladesh is one of the world’s most crowded countries. Imagine forcing half of America’s population into an area smaller than Illinois. That’s a lot of potential customers squeezed into a confined place.

All of this teeming humanity is overseen by corrupt police officers, many of whom make roughly $25 per week. That salary doesn’t incentivize them to risk their lives taking down well-armed traffickers. If anything, it leaves them vulnerable to drug syndicates doling out bribes.

Bangladesh is also swimming in teenagers. Roughly one-third of its 160 million citizens is between 15 and 30 — a drug dealer’s demographic dream. Most of these young adults live in the impoverished countryside. There isn’t much to do out there but pray, work the fields and maybe play some cricket.

People board an overcrowded passenger train as they travel home to celebrate the Eid al-Fitr festival, which marks the end of Ramadan, at a railway station in Dhaka, Bangladesh, July 5, 2016.

“The narcotics businessmen, they are relentless,” Abuzar says. “They spread stories that methamphetamine, it will increase your sex power. They also say it will improve your working ability.”

Both of these sales pitches are true — at least until the comedown turns the meth user into a clammy, lethargic mess.

In Bangladesh, as in much of Asia, meth is not always used as a party drug. Speed pills are often intertwined with hard labor. One addict named Yunus — a 45-year-old fisherman living in Ukhia, a lush province fronting the Indian Ocean — says he only uses the drug for marathon work sessions.

Fishermen take meth to work harder. It keeps us warm out on the cold seas,” Yunus says. “Look at drunks. They always want to quarrel and make a scene. Not us. Meth smokers just want to work really hard.”

Twelve years of addiction have left Yunus rawboned and fidgety. He incessantly picks at his scraggly hairline. His eyes are covered in a yellow film.

Yet Yunus is convinced that meth pills are less harmful than alcohol. He says that booze, explicitly forbidden by the Quran, is seen by many in Bangladesh as more sinful than meth.

Bangladesh’s meth woes are, in part, an accident of geography. Its neighbor to the east just happens to be Myanmar, Asia’s top exporter of methamphetamine — a nation where the drug trade is protected by the powerful military.

In the highlands of Myanmar, more than 1,000 miles from Bangladesh, armed clans crank out meth with impunity. As a former US Drug Enforcement Agency chief previously told PRI, Myanmar’s army is “providing tacit approval for drugs to be produced in these areas.”

Privately, Abuzar says, Bangladeshi police keep confronting Myanmar officials about their deep entanglement in the meth trade. “We have concrete information about all this,” Abuzar says. “But they don’t like to talk about it.”

The meth surging into Bangladesh must pass through one of Myanmar’s most militarized zones. Just across the border, the state imposes apartheid conditions on the Rohingya, among the world’s most tormented minorities.

That means checkpoints galore. Trafficking anything through the Rohingya homeland — drugs, people, you name it — is extremely difficult without official complicity.

Meanwhile, on the river border separating the two countries, Bangladeshi border guards stand watch with rusty Kalashnikovs and store-bought binoculars.

By the hundreds, dinghies and riverboats launch from Myanmar’s far shores packed with cargo. Most of it is legal. Some of it isn’t. These underpaid, poorly equipped border guards are left to sort out the criminals from the workaday boatmen.

The traffickers are now so flagrant that they’ve started stashing meth right on the riverbed — practically in plain sight.

They’ll pack the drugs into waterproof bundles, wrapped tightly in tape and plastic. Then they’ll attach weights so that the packages sink below the water’s surface. When the patrols ease up, the traffickers will scoop up the drugs and slip onto Bangladeshi shores.

“See how tightly they pack up the ya ba? It’s perfectly waterproof,” says Abuzar, ripping apart a freshly nabbed drug bundle back at the station.

Hours before, his river patrol units caught two men fishing the package out of the river. As the colonel tears open its plastic wrapping, the evidence room fills with the vanilla-sweet aroma.

“Almost every day, we catch more and more,” he says. The flow of meth is unrelenting, he says. “It’s a cat and mouse game.”


Comments Off on Heather Laverne Germain, 48, and Michael Lowell Germain, 43, of Goodhue, accused of sexual assault of teenage minor girl

RED WING — A Goodhue couple faces multiple felony charges after a teenager told authorities they’d sexually assaulted her multiple times, often in what is described as a “sex room” above their garage.

Michael Lowell Germain, 43, and his wife, Heather Laverne Germain, 48, of 504 Fourth Ave., Goodhue, were arrested on a warrant Friday. A bail hearing on Monday in Goodhue County District Court set his conditional bond at $75,000; hers was set at $50,000.

Michael Germain was charged with three counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct; three counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct; three counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct; three counts of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct and interference with privacy of a minor, all felonies. He faces an additional charge of interference with privacy-surreptitiously installs a recording device, a gross misdemeanor.

Heather Germain faces three counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct; three counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct; interference with privacy of a minor and neglect or endangerment of a child, all felonies. She faces an additional charge of fifth-degree drug possession, a gross misdemeanor.

Both posted bond today and are due back in court June 2.

The investigation began in January, when the victim reported she’d been sexually assaulted by Michael Germain for nearly two years, the complaint says, beginning when he asked her for naked photos and/or videos of herself.

Heather Germain “encouraged” her to send the photos and “repeatedly encouraged her to wear revealing clothing in an effort to sexually arouse Michael Germain,” court documents say. Heather Germain “was constantly asking her to have sex with Michael Germain” because “it would satisfy a fetish that he had.”

The victim said the Germains engage in an “open sexual lifestyle,” are “swingers” and have a “sex room” in the attic of the garage.

After several months of pressure, the girl said she “gave in” and started sending Michael Germain photos and videos that depict her naked, urinating and wearing revealing outfits purchased by Germain, the complaint says.

It was also about the time she “gave in” and began to “do things with Mike,” the document alleges, including sexual intercourse.

After the first few times, Germain took her to the “sex room,” it continues, which contains items like whips, chains, a medical examination table, neck collars, bondage devices and multiple storage bins containing sex toys. The detached garage at the couple’s residence has two levels; the upper level could be accessed only through a door secured with an electronic lock. Upstairs are three rooms separated by secured doors.

The victim said both Michael and Heather Germain participated in the sex acts with her, the complaint says, and Michael Germain has asked her multiple times to provide him methamphetamine, crack cocaine, LSD and marijuana. Some meth residue was allegedly found inside the home.

Michael Germain admitted to participating in a “swinger” lifestyle, but denied any sexual contact with the victim.

A forensic examination of his electronic devices turned up 50 images of the victim, as well as video footage of the girl that appears to have been taken with a hidden camera, the court documents say.

The victim was able to describe the bodies of both Heather and Michael Germain, including distinguishing characteristics, report says.


Small-town Minnesota ‘swingers’ filmed girl in ‘sex room,’ charges say

A southeastern Minnesota couple have been charged after an underage girl went to police, saying she had been exploited by the pair in their “sex room.”

Michael Lowell Germain, 43, and Heather Laverne Germain, 49, appeared in Goodhue County District Court on Monday on multiple charges of criminal sexual conduct.

The girl contacted Goodhue police in January and said she was being sexually assaulted and exploited by the couple, who she said were “swingers” and have a “sex room” in the attic of their garage, according to the criminal complaint.

The girl told police in an interview that she was brought to the attic of a garage at 504 Fourth Ave., across the street from the Goodhue Public School.

According to the complaint: Law enforcement executed a search warrant at the residence in January and seized multiple electronic devices in the home and garage. Several items tested positive for methamphetamine and cocaine residue.

Investigators found the detached garage had upper and lower levels. The complaint stated that the upper level could be accessed only through a door secured with an electronic lock. Authorities discovered three distinct rooms in the upper level, all separated by secured doors. Officers found a doctor’s examination table and “an open storage unit that contained multiple bottles of lubrication, large containers of disinfectant wipes, along with multiple sex toys.”

Also present in the “sex room” was a large, free-standing wooden structure, estimated to be at least 8 feet tall. Investigators observed that holes drilled in the structure could “easily be used to anchor or tie a person or objects to the structure,” the complaint stated.

When investigators interviewed Michael Germain in January, he acknowledged his “swinger” lifestyle but denied engaging in any type of sexual acts with the girl, the complaint stated.

The Goodhue County sheriff’s office found video and photos of the girl on multiple devices, the report said. Cameras and recording devices were found throughout the garage and residence. Investigators also found numerous photos and videos of Heather and Michael Germain having sex with each other, and separately with different men and women.

Arrest warrants for Heather and Michael Germain were executed April 20. Heather Germain is facing three first-degree criminal sexual conduct charges, three third-degree criminal sexual conduct charges, neglect or endangerment of a child, interference of privacy against a minor under the age of 18 and fifth-degree drug possession.

Michael Germain is facing three counts each of first, second, third and fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct and two interfering with privacy charges. The maximum sentence for criminal sexual conduct in the first-degree is 30 years imprisonment, a $40,000 fine or both per charge. Heather and Michael Germain are scheduled to appear in district court June 2, 2017.


Goodhue Couple Facing Multiple Criminal Sexual Conduct Charges

A Goodhue couple are facing multiple counts of criminal sexual misconduct and other charges in connection with allegations made by a juvenile female.

Michael Lowell Germain, 43, and Heather Laverne Germain, 48, are accused of having coerced the juvenile into producing naked videos and pictures of herself to send to Michael Germain, and eventually into participating in sexual acts with one or both of them – including in a “sex room” on the upper level of the couple’s detached garage.

The complaint also alleges the girl was asked multiple times by Michael Germain to provide him with illegal drugs including, but not limited to, crack cocaine, LSD and marijuana.

The complaint states investigators discovered 50 images (49 pictures and one video) of the juvenile girl under a private application app on a cell phone belonging to Michael Germain. Some of them appeared to have been taken without her knowledge.

According to the complaint, the victim first came forward to the Goodhue Police Department to report she was being sexually assaulted by Michael Germain. She told authorities she was 14 when he began asking her to send photos and/or videos of herself.

She also said Heather Germain encouraged her to send photos and videos to Michael Germain.

The complaint states the juvenile also told authorities Michael Germain had multiple computers and monitors in the garage that he used to watch pornography, and on multiple occasions he had invited her into the garage while he was masturbating and asked her to join in.

The complaint states the juvenile said she began to “do things with Mike” when she was 15, and Heather Germain was aware of the activity.

In an interview with authorities, Michael Germain denied engaging in any type of sexual acts with the victim. Both Michael and Heather Germain posted bond were released from jail Tuesday. Their first court appearances are scheduled for June 6.

Michael Germain has been charged with three counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct, three counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct, three counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct, three counts of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct, one count of interference with the privacy of a minor, and one count of surreptitiously installing or using a recording device to interfere with privacy.

All but the last charge are felonies. The final is a gross misdemeanor.

Heather Germain has been charged with three counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct, three counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct, one count of interfering with the privacy of a minor, one count of neglect/endangerment of a child and one count of fifth-degree marijuana possession.

All but the final charge are felonies. The final is a gross misdemeanor.


Authorities uncover couple’s ‘sex room’ in Minn. sexual assault case

GOODHUE, Minn. — Goodhue County authorities allegedly discovered a “sex room” in Goodhue in southeastern Minnesota this past winter and this week Michael Lowell Germain, 43, and Heather Laverne Germain, 49, appeared in Goodhue County District Court on multiple criminal sexual conduct charges related to the room.

The initial inquiry into the Germain residence in the rural town of about 1,200 people between Minneapolis and Rochester stemmed from a juvenile female contacting the Goodhue Police Department in January  saying she was being sexually assaulted and exploited by the couple.

In further interviews, the girl alleged she was brought to the attic of a garage across the street from the Goodhue Public School.

The complaint states that the girl told investigators that the Germains “are ‘swingers’ and have a ‘sex room’ in the attic of the garage.”

Law enforcement agents executed a search warrant at the residence and according to the complaint multiple electronic devices were recovered and seized inside the residence and garage. Several items tested positive for methamphetamine and cocaine residue.

Investigators observed that the detached garage contained an upper and a lower level. The complaint stated that the upper level could be accessed only by gaining access through a door secured with an electronic lock.

Authorities discovered three distinct rooms in the upper level, all separated by secured doors. According to the criminal complaint, law enforcement observed in the sex room  a doctor’s examination table and “an open storage unit that contained multiple bottles of lubrication, large containers of disinfectant wipes, along with multiple sex toys.”

Also found was a large, free-standing wooden structure, estimated to be at least 8 feet tall. Investigators observed that holes drilled in the structure could “easily be used to anchor or tie a person or objects to the structure,” the complaint stated.

When investigators interviewed Michael Germain in January, he denied engaging in any type of sexual acts with the girl. The complaint stated that Germain acknowledged he participates in a “swinger” lifestyle.

After the Goodhue County Sheriff’s Office completed forensic examinations of the seized devices, video and photos of the juvenile female were found on multiple devices, the report said. Multiple cameras and recording devices were found through the garage and residence. Investigators also found photos and videos of the Germains engaged in sexual conduct with each other and separately with various adult men and women.

Arrest warrants for the couple were executed April 20. Heather Germain faces three first-degree criminal sexual conduct charges, three third-degree criminal sexual charges, neglect or endangerment of a child, interference of privacy against a minor under age of 18 and fifth-degree drug possession. Michael Germain faces three counts each of first, second, third and fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct and two interfering with privacy charges. The maximum sentence for criminal sexual conduct in the first-degree is 30 years imprisonment and a $40,000 fine.



Comments Off on Kristi S. Roark, 29, of Payson, faces Methamphetamine charge; child found in home

ADAMS COUNTY, Ill. (WGEM) – A Payson, Illinois, woman was arrested Monday on a meth charge and an outstanding warrant, according to a news release.

West Central Illinois Task Force M/Sgt. Patrick Frazier stated Kristi S. Roark, 29, was arrested on an outstanding Brown County warrant. He stated the warrant was for 32 counts of deceptive practice.

Frazier stated during a search, officers found Roark had meth and drug paraphernalia on her.

Authorities stated a child was also found in the home. Frazier stated the child was turned over to a family member



Comments Off on Pottery covered in Methamphetamine paste sold to undercover detectives in Polk County – Omar Palencia, 30, of Davenport, arrested

– An undercover operation uncovered a meth trafficking operation using pottery as a cover. The Polk County Sheriff’s Office said undercover detectives found pottery covered in “meth paste” which would later be cooked off and sold.

The suspect, 30-year-old Omar Palencia, of Davenport, is accused of selling three pieces of meth-covered pottery to PCSO undercover detectives on Monday. When they arrested him, detectives said he had two pieces of broken pottery in his pocket, containing 101 grams of meth. He told detectives was for personal use.

Palencia told detectives the meth would have had a street value of $600,000.

Palencia was booked into the Polk County Jail, where he is being held on no bond for charges of trafficking meth; over 400 grams, trafficking meth; 28-200 grams, two counts of possession of a vehicle used to traffic drugs, and two counts of possession of drug paraphernalia.

“You can see the lengths drug dealers go to, to get their illegal product out on the street. Omar Palencia will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, and thanks to minimum mandatory sentencing laws, he should be out of the drug dealing business for quite some time. Our detectives’ work hard every day to keep illegal drugs off our streets,” Sheriff Grady Judd said of the arrest.



Comments Off on Twelve women and men arrested after Methamphetamine drug bust in Colorado and Nebraska

LINCOLN, Neb. (KNOP) – UPDATE: Twelve people have been arrested, most of them from Colorado, during another Federal and multi-state drug investigation.

Members of the Cooperative Operation for Drug Enforcement (CODE) Drug Task Force and Western Nebraska Intelligence & Narcotics Group (WING) led the arrest of eleven people early Tuesday morning. The raids included seizure of weapons, ammunition, methamphetamine and cash according to Acting United States Attorney Robert C. Stuart. A twelfth person, as yet unidentified, was arrested late Tuesday afternoon.

According to unsealed Federal indictments, those arrested were:

  1. Tomas Bencomo – Age 52 – Yuma, CO
    Count 1- U.S.C. § 846 – 10-20 years I $1,000,000 – 3 years TSR – $100 SA
  2. Robert Krehmeyer – Age 47 -Wray, Colorado
    Count 1- 21:846 Conspiracy to distribute and PWID methamphetamine IO-life; $10,000,000; 5 yrs. TSR, $100 SA
  3. Juan Carlos Olea – Age 25 – Wray, Colorado
    Count 1- 21:846 Conspiracy to distribute and PWID methamphetamine IO-life; $10,000,000; 5 yrs. TSR, $100 SA
  4. Carlos Campos-Olea – Age 49 – Wray, Colorado
    Count 1- 21:846 Conspiracy to distribute and PWID methamphetamine 10-life; $10,000,000; 5 yrs. TSR, $100 SA
    Count 2- 18:922(g)(l) & 924(a) (2) Felon in possession of firearm 10 yrs.; $250,000; 3 yrs. TSR; $100 SA
    Count 3 – 18 U.S.C. § 1956(h) Conspiracy to commit money laundering;20 yrs.; $500,000 or twice the value of monetary instruments or funds involved.
  5. Armando Ledesma – Age 39 – Kanorado, Kansas
    Count 1- 21:846 Conspiracy to distribute and PWID methamphetamine IO-life; $10,000,000; 5 yrs. TSR, $100 SA
  6. Ivan Murillo – Age 29 – Unknown Address
    Count 1- 21:846 Conspiracy to distribute and PWID methamphetamine 5-40 yrs.; $5,000,000; 4 yrs. TSR, $100 SA
  7. Araceli Antonio Rasgado – Age 48 – Wray, Colorado
    Count 1 – 21:846 & 18:2 Conspiracy to distribute and PWID methamphetamine 0-20 yrs.; $1,000,000; 3 yrs. TSR, $100 SA
  8. Carlos Ramos – Age 40 – North Platte, NE
    Count 1 – 21 U.S.C. 846 Conspiracy to distribute Methamphetamine,
    5~40 years $5,000,000- 4 years TSR- $100 SA
  9. Francisco Rodriguez-Morales – Age 36 – Wray, CO.
    Count 1- 21:846 Conspiracy to distribute and PWID methamphetamine 0-20 yrs.; $1,000,000; 3 yrs. TSR, $100 SA
  10. Kristine Brueggeman – Age 48 – Wray, CO
    Count 1- 21:846 Conspiracy to distribute and PWID methamphetamine 0-20 yrs.; $1,000,000; 3 yrs. TSR, $100 SA
  11. Amalia Diaz – Age 60 – Ovid, CO
    Count 1- 21:846 Conspiracy to distribute and PWID methamphetamine 0-20 yrs.; $1,000,000; 3 yrs. TSR, $100 SA

These arrests today were a direct result of that effort and confirms the commitment the federal, state and local law enforcement agencies to aggressively pursue drug cases as a top priority in the District of Nebraska. The names of the individuals and their charges will be released later today when their federal indictments are unsealed.

FBI Special Agent in Charge Randall Thysse recognized the unwavering teamwork of all the agencies involved, stating, “This long term investigation presented unique challenges given the wide geographic territory of Western Nebraska and Eastern Colorado. I am extremely proud of all the dedicated men and women who worked to bring these perpetrators to justice. This case demonstrates how numerous agencies can act as a force multiplier and achieve significant results.”

During the early morning hours of Tuesday, April 25, 2017, CODE and WING members to include the assistance of other Nebraska and Colorado federal, state and local law enforcement agencies executed arrest warrants spanning from North Platte, NE to Wray, CO.

“The distribution hubs for drugs typically covers many states and often multiple countries, a lot of the drugs that we see here come from other states to include Colorado. That’s why even though a lot of these arrests were made in Colorado, they’re very important to our task force, because it can still have a large effect on the distribution chain in our area,” said Brian Eads, Task Force Commander for the WING Drug Task Force.

The CODE Drug Task Force is made up of law enforcement agencies throughout a 22 county area in west-central/southwest Nebraska. The WING Task Force covers the eleven panhandle counties (Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux). The agencies involved in these Task Forces use their combined strength to work against drug dealers in their area of responsibility.

“Anytime we can disrupt the chain of distribution for our area that’s our task force’s main goal, be that by making local cases here but also by going up the chain to be able to try to disrupt it at a higher level. If we disrupt it at the local level sometimes that may only affect it for just a matter of hours or sometimes days, whereas this can make a larger dent,” added Eads.

Nebraska Law Enforcement Agencies involved in the operation/investigation:

FBI Omaha
Nebraska State Patrol
Sidney Police Department
Alliance Police Department
Scottsbluff County Sheriff’s Office
Ogallala Police Department
North Platte Police Department
Gering Police Department
Scottsbluff Police Department
Cheyenne County Sheriff’s Office

Colorado Law Enforcement Agencies involved in the operation/investigation:

FBI Denver
Holyoke Police Department
Kit Carson County Sheriff’s Office
Yuma County Sheriff’s Office
Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office
Burlington Police Department
13th Judicial District Attorney’s Office, Sterling, CO

Kansas Law Enforcement Agencies involved in the operation/investigation:

Kansas Bureau of Investigation



Comments Off on Methamphetamine causing multiple problems for law enforcement in Geneva County

Drug crimes are not unusual matter of fact they’ve actually been taking place for several decades now.

However, recently the problem has grown leading to other crimes as a result.

We have recently seen an increase in burglaries here in the Wiregrass.

Geneva County Sheriff Tony Helms believes that’s a direct correlation with the increase of methamphetamine.

The drug problem for the Wiregrass all began in the late 90’s.

“Geneva County, Covington County, and Coffee County probably had it before anybody else did,” said Sheriff Tony Helms.

Back then the drug of choice was crack cocaine.

“I’ve probably seen a decline in crack cocaine which is probably from the increase use of meth,” said Sheriff Tony Helms.

With Geneva County bordering three Florida counties there has become a boost in the transportation of meth across state lines.

The best way for them to be caught is through a vigilant officer.

“Then turns that traffic stop into an investigative stop and through good police work he’s able to find it,” said Sheriff Tony Helms.

Although there is a increase in drug charges there’s a decrease in the severity of their punishment.

“They’re not going to go to prison,” said Sheriff Tony Helms. “The prisons say they are full of drug users. We have folk in jail that we are locking it on property crimes that tell us the reason they did it was for drugs or it was drug related.”

But theft of property isn’t the only crime escalating domestic violence and assault is on the rise as well.

Methamphetamine increases the heart rate it increases paranoia it also presents now that they are schizophrenic so they don’t trust people and we are having to fight people at the scene,” said Sheriff Tony Helms.

As for the progress of the Geneva County Jail they have drilled holes in the ground and conducted a boreing test.

“But we are moving along with it,” said Sheriff Tony Helms.

The number one drug  causing problem in geneva county is methamphetamine then crack cocaine last is marijuana.


Comments Off on From the Sinaloa truce, to the empowerment of the CJNG

Translated by Otis B Fly-Wheel for Borderland Beat from a Zetatijuana article

Subject Matter: Sinaloa Cartel, CJNG
Recommendation: No prior subject matter knowledge required

In the study of the project Justice in Mexico at the University of San Diego, the struggle between the CJNG and the Sinaloa Cartel has been analyzed, for control of the zones and routes for narco trafficking has led to a 20% increase in homicides in 2016. Augmented by the poor socio-economic conditions in Mexico and the heroin epidemic in the United States, investigators urge that the drugs problem is a problem of public health.

Reporter: Ines Garcia Ramos

The dispute for the territory controlled by Joaquin “El Chapo Guzman” against the CJNG in alliance with other organizations against the Sinaloa Cartel in different regions of Mexico, is one of the causes for the rise in homicides in the last few years.

David Shirk, Director of the program Justice in Mexico, spoke with Zeta about this and other announcements in the annual report “Violence and narco trafficking in Mexico”, after his presentation in the University of San Diego.

Justice in Mexico started in 2001 as an investigative initiative to study the systems of justice in Mexico. Since then it has evolved into a study of public politics that could reduce the levels of crimes and violence.

The analysis carried out by Shirk with two investigators of the program, Octavio Rodriguez Ferreria and Kimberly Heinle, reviewed data bases corresponding to 2016 to explain the augmentation in crime levels and in particular homicides.

“We observed a substantive increase of almost 20% in homicides over the whole country, in areas linked to narco trafficking, for example, in Tijuana and the Pacific Coast.”, detailed the Professor from the University of San Diego.

For the investigator, the second detention of “El Chapo”, in January of 2016, fired up the level of violence, in the plazas that are controlled by narco traffickers, with disputes.

“There are reports that indicate that members of his cartel and that of the CJNG are starting to contest these spaces and routes for narco trafficking.”

There the emphasis of the study is on the failed strategy that was started by the Mexican Government to debilitate the Cartels, to decapitate its principal leaders, as occurred with El Chapo, Osiel Cardenas and Benjamin Arellano Felix.
“The result was a grave conflict between different organizations intent on taking plazas, expressed Shirk from the Croc Institute for Peace and Justice at the University of San Diego.

The prognostics of Shirk detected, in the data bases, interviews with functionaries, monitoring of newspapers, and the interchange of information with other organizations that” we believe that the wave of violence will continue until these criminal groups establish and equilibrium, or a monopoly or a pact.”

The specialist included about public security in Mexico that, “we are not ruling out that an alliance between the Sinaloa Cartel and the CJNG, could implicate a significant reduction in the violence.”

CJNG the new “Chapos”

In 2010, after the arrests of Benjamin Arellano Felix, Osiel Cardenas, Vincente Carrillo Fuentes and the execution of Arturo Beltran Leyva, the Sinaloa Cartel consolidated their criminal organization to obtain major control of narco trafficking operations in the whole of Mexico as well as the United States.

This, explains the study, provoked the violence that descended gradually in the period known as the Sinaloa truce, or the Sinaloa peace, this explains why Tijuana and Ciudad Juarez at the lowest levels of homicide between 2011 and 2014.

This stage doesn’t only implicate a fortified position of the organization led by El Chapo Guzman and Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada, but also its implicit pacts or explicit pacts with functionaries to continue control of its plazas.

However, with the first recapture of El Chapo Guzman, in February of 2014, there was an observed change in respect of the homicides in some zones of control, among them, Tijuana.

For the Doctor, David Shirk, the second detention of the leader of the Sinaloa Cartel, occurred in January of 2016, after he fled from the maximum security “Altiplano” prison in 2015, as well as when he was transferred to the Ciudad Juarez prison, in May of 2016, debilitated the stature of the capo. This provoked strong confrontations in the Pacific Coast territories.

This was because after his arrest, members of the Sinaloa Cartel were able to ally themselves with the BLO and the CJNG. Although the CJNG is based in Jalisco, it has a presence in Baja California, Chihuahua, Colima, Michoacan, Guanajuato, Nayarit, Guerrero, Morelos, Veracruz and Mexico City.

The organization led by Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes, El Mencho, details the study, will continue to consolidate in the future. Their alliances, for example, with the remnants of the CAF in Tijauana and the Juarez Cartel in Chihuahua, have demonstrated their capacity for strength and financing, which gives them the possibility to position themselves as the new “Chapos”, says the expert.

The government is not controlling the violence

The report not only takes into account the dynamics of the black market and the strategies, but the actions and reactions of the cartels during their expansions and or defense of territories, as triggering the violence in Mexico.

In one of its sections, the researchers analyze the socio-economic factors that coincided in 2016, the second year in which the number of intentional homicides in the country rose.

These include the devaluation of the pesos, the stagnation of economic growth, the few job and educational opportunities, uncertainty and financial instability and the terrible levels of approval of the President of the Republic, Enrique Pena Nieto.

In 2016, the report indicates that the five states with the highest number of intentional homicides are Guerrero with 2,123, State of Mexico with 2053, Michoacan with 1887, Veracruz with 1258, and Colima with 1232. They were followed by Baja California with 1179 and Sinaloa with 1110 and Jalisco with 1500.

It highlights how that year, with 871 Felony homicides, Tijuana had the third highest number in the last ten years, with 871. While from January 1st to April 20th of 2017, there were 417 executions the highest number in the last ten years in this period.

In conclusion, the report stresses that ” the effort to improve public security in Mexico is not accurate and simple, since even the reduction in violence seen in previous years ( 2012 – 2014 ) can not be directly attributed to compliance with the law.”

As part of public policies to reduce violence, the program raises not only the training and professionalization of police corporations, but also work on accountability as the basis for the justice system.

The heroin epidemic and the legalization debate

According to the study, 591,000 people over the age of 12 acknowledged having used heroin in the United States during 2015, this triggered 12,990 deaths from overdoses of this drug.

The dramatic increase, the researchers explain, is related to two reasons. On the one hand, more doctors prescribe opiates to reduce pain in patients, and on the other hand, the production of heroin by cartels in Mexico.

Since these cartels do not have capacity in the production chains as broad as those of their predecessors in South America, ” for a few organizations like the CJNG, it is much easier to enter the heroin market as Mexico cannot produce enough”, says Shirk.

The solution, he says, is not to fight the Cartels from the Government, since with the large amounts of money in the hands of criminals like El Mayo and El Mencho, it is impossible to prevent Governmental collusion with narcos to provide them with protection.

“The key is to reduce the amount of money the organizations can generate, and the best way to do it is to stop using drugs in the United States or legalize them”, he said.

Since the Merida initiative was strengthened in 2008, the United States has provided 2.6 billion dollars in support of public safety institutions in Mexico to combat drugs. However, the specialist says; “We have to have a conversation between Mexico, the United States and other countries that suffer from this endless war on drugs to identify a strategy that turns what has been treated as public security problem, as a problem of Public Health”.

Seven of the 59 entities that make up the American Union have already legalized the use of marijuana, but Shirk indicates that this drug only makes up 20% of the drugs trafficked from Mexico.

For the researcher, the solution must cover other factors such as the conditions that lead to the consumption of these drugs, especially in the North and Centre of the Country, and appoint it as a public health policy.

We have to think of broader solutions than sending cops to stop people who sell drugs. It is now a solution too simplified as we have seen over the last 50 years, that it has not worked and how Mexico pays the price of the consumption of these drugs in the United States, Its just not fair.

Original article in Spanish at Zetatijuana

Comments Off on U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers arrest Stefani Cruz Guerrero, of Fort Worth, after finding 31 kilograms of Methamphetamine ‘juice’ at Progreso bridge

Federal agents arrested a woman at the Progreso bridge on Saturday afternoon, when she attempted to cross the border with 31 kilograms of “juice.”

Stefani Cruz Guerrero, a United States citizen from Fort Worth, attempted to cross the Progreso International Bridge at 12:50 p.m. Saturday.

Guerrero appeared nervous and told U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers she brought back “chips and drinks” from Progreso, according to the federal criminal complaint against her.

Officers sent her to secondary inspection.

According to the criminal complaint:

At the secondary inspection area, GUERRERO claimed ownership of the cart loaded with numerous containers of juice, milk, and other merchandise. A CBP certified-Canine Team conducted a systemic search of GUERRERO’s merchandise and indicated a positive alert to the containers of juice and milk. A closer inspection of the drink contained revealed a number of them were packaged and filled with a liquid substance inconsistent with the actual labeled product. CBPOs conducted a field test of the liquid substance which yielded positive for characteristics of methamphetamine. A total of approximately 31.44 kilograms of liquid methamphetamine, in approximately 27 separate drink containers, were seized from GUERRERO.

Officers contacted Homeland Security Investigations, a division of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Agents interviewed Guerrero, who claimed someone promised her money to pick up “juice” in Progreso, according to the criminal complaint.

“GUERRERO stated she suspected she would be smuggling marijuana or some other type of contraband from Mexico into the United States, but was not sure to the specifics,” according to the criminal complaint.

Guerrero is charged with attempting to import liquid methamphetamine, possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine.

Court records don’t list an attorney for Guerrero, who remains in federal custody and couldn’t be reached for comment.



Comments Off on Jacob Harris, 31, a former star on ‘Deadliest Catch’ arrested for Methamphetamine possession in Phoenix

PHOENIX – One of the stars of Deadliest Catch has been caught himself.

Jacob Harris, 31, stands accused of possessing methamphetamine and unprescribed Xanax, as well as car theft after Phoenix police arrested him Saturday.

According to police documents, Harris was traveling with a friend through Phoenix and staying in a hotel.

The friend called police after waking up around midnight Saturday morning and noticing Harris and her car keys were gone. She told police she’d never given Harris permission to drive her car.

She called him and he told her he was at a Circle K at 19th and Campbell avenues, where they argued about the car and whether he had permission to drive it, according to police.

Officers arrived and asked Harris to empty his pockets to see if he had the car keys. A plastic bag with Xanax inside fell out. Harris told officers he didn’t have the bottle or prescription with him, so he was arrested.

Police also found another bag in Harris’ pocket with meth inside. He claimed it belonged to his friend before eventually saying he’d bought it from someone off the street, police said.

He’s since been booked into the 4th Avenue Jail.



Comments Off on Angie Renee Morton Horne, 34, and Kelvin Maurice Horne, 44, of Albemarle, arrested on 43 charges related to trafficking Methamphetamine

A five-month long drug-related investigation ended with the arrest of an Albemarle couple.

Kelvin Maurice Horne, 44, and Angie Renee Morton Horne, 34, were charged Wednesday with 43 offenses related to the sell, possession and trafficking of methamphetamine on Clete Road, according to the Stanly County Sheriff’s Office.

Two additional arrests are pending for a total of 54 alleged offenses, reports show.

The arrest stems from a probe involving the Sheriff’s Office, Albemarle police and the N.C. State Bureau of Investigation.

The Hornes are awaiting sentencing in federal court next month for prior drug charges, reports show.

Both were jailed under $1 million secured bonds each.



Comments Off on Dodge County Sheriff’s Office: Beware Methamphetamine debris amid roadside trash

DODGE COUNTY — Area law enforcement officials are advising caution as volunteers begin the never-ending task of clearing litter from highway shoulders.

The Dodge County Sheriff’s Office posted Sunday on its Facebook page with a warning that some litter often found by Adopt-a-Highway volunteers and similar workers can be dangerous.

“Individuals will manufacture Methamphetamine in what is referred to as ‘shake and bake’ method,” the post read. “Once they obtain their Meth product, they will often discard the bottles in roadside ditches. If these bottles were to be opened and oxygen is introduced to the volatile chemicals inside, the bottle could blow up and cause serious injury or even death.”

Steele County Sheriff Lon Thiele said it’s always wise to play it safe with roadside litter, and noted there was a bomb scare several weeks ago involving a sealed PVC pipe found in a ditch along Interstate 35.

“People that are always out picking up the litter should understand that if something looks suspicious, leave it alone,” he said. “Go ahead and call law enforcement, and we’ll check it out for them.”

Danger signs include pop bottles with straws in the caps, or with unusual substances caked inside, according to the Facebook post.


Comments Off on Kayla Renea Roth, 26, of Summer, arrested during 2 a.m. traffic stop for Methamphetamine

Kayla Renea Roth, 26, of Summer Texas was arrested Friday at 2 a.m. at the corner of Highway 19 and FM 71 by a Hopkins County Deputy. When the deputy made a traffic stop, Roth showed signs of methamphetamine use. Roth said she had been arrested in Gregg County for Possession of meth a month ago but had not used meth since that arrest. Her story is one of many who are in the stranglehold of meth.

With consent to search the vehicle, the deputy called the DPS K-9 handler. The K-9 gave a positive alert on the vehicle. A clear plastic baggie containing methamphetamine was found inside the glove box. A pipe commonly used to smoke meth was also found in the vehicle.

Roth told the officers that she was going to Rehab in Winnsboro this weekend and was out on bond from Gregg County for the other possession. She is now in Hopkins County Jail charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance Penalty Group 1 >1-gram <4-grams and is being held on a $15,000 bond.



Comments Off on Mother, Roberta Smith, of Charleston, charged after police allege she was shooting up Methamphetamine while her baby was just a short distance away from her and her two small children were roaming the neighborhood

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) — A mother is facing felony charges after police say she was shooting up drugs while her baby was just a short distance away from her and two small children were roaming the neighborhood.

The mother and father of a baby and two toddlers were arrested Friday after the incident. Police say their home was “filthy,” had drugs, drug paraphernalia and spoiled food out in the open. They say the home was unsafe for children to be living in.

The arrests happened at a home on Ruffner Avenue, just feet away from a Charleston Police station.

A construction crew working on the home next door, rang the bell at the police station, alerting them that two small children were running around the neighborhood unsupervised and dodging traffic.

“I stumbled upon a mother actually in the process of injecting drugs into her system beside another child that was in a baby crib,” says Sgt. Chris Burford with Charleston Police. “

The children’s mother, Roberta Smith, is charged with child neglect with risk of injury, possession of crystal meth and possession of a controlled substance. The children’s father, Jacob Harrison, is charged with giving false information to police.

Several officers responded to the scene. Patrolman Adam Aldridge was one of them, and is pictured holding the smallest child.

“My priority was just taking care of the kids, making sure that they were having fun ,” Aldridge tells WSAZ. “Kind of hurts your heart, because you realize there are a lot of other children who aren’t being taken care of the way they should be.”

Aldridge is a father and says calls that involve children are always more difficult. He says the call “hits me deep.” He says his main focus was playing with the children and keeping them distracted from what was happening inside the home.

The police officers say they waited for CPS to arrive before arresting the two parents.

“It puts a bad image in the children’s head,” says Aldridge.

Patrolman Tyler Jude has only been with the Charleston Police Department since January but says he already knows calls involving drugs and kids happen much more frequently than they should. He says he deals with drug calls and overdoses daily.

“Something that we see every day, and you just expect it every shift.”

Police say all three of the kids in the incident were under the age of five. CPS has intervened.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) — A mother was arrested Friday for child neglect creating risk of injury, possession of crystal meth and possession of a controlled substance.

Charleston Police arrested the woman after she was allegedly shooting up drugs beside of her youngest child.

Police say the other two children she is responsible for were playing in the road when police were notified by a construction crew in the area.

The children were taken into custody by CPS.

During the arrest, officers with the Charleston Police Department interacted with the young children to keep them calm.

The woman’s name has not been released.



Comments Off on Erica Weger, 26, of Paris, jailed after three small children in her care test positive for Methamphetamine

LAMAR COUNTY, Texas (KXII) — A Paris woman is behind bars after three small children in her care tested positive for meth.

26-year-old Erica Weger of Paris was arrested Thursday in Wood County and transported to the Lamar County Jail.

She faces three counts of abandoning or endangering a child criminal negligence after three children tested positive for methamphetamine in Lamar County..

We’re told the investigation by the Paris Police Department and CPS began in late February and is still on-going.–420111803.html



Comments Off on Methamphetamine Bust After Thomas J. McConnell II, 34, Of Versailles, Falls Asleep In Batesville McDonald’s Drive Thru

(Batesville, Ind.) – A Versailles man who fell asleep in a McDonald’s drive thru is facing multiple drug related charges.

The Batesville Police Department responded to the report around 5:58 a.m. on April 14 at Batesville McDonald’s location, just off Interstate 74.

Upon arriving at the scene, police say they found Thomas J. McConnell II sleeping in his vehicle in the McDonald’s parking lot. According to the arrest report, McConnell had woken up, moved his car from the drive thru to the parking lot, and fell back asleep.

During a search of McConnell’s vehicle, police allegedly found a glass pipe, butane torch, methamphetamine, suspected marijuana, smoking pipes, plastic bags, cash and a digital scale.

McConnell, 34, was arrested and transported to the Franklin County Jail.

He is charged with Dealing in Methamphetamine (Level 5 felony), Possession of Methamphetamine (Level 6 felony) and Possession of Paraphernalia (Class A misdemeanor).


Comments Off on 3-year-old child found in Nichols Village hotel room strewn with Methamphetamine, drugs and syringes – Kayla Nicole Thurston, 20, of Factoryville, Ariel Ann Burke, 20, and David Paul Button, 22, of Abington Township, arrested

SOUTH ABINGTON TWP. — Police arrested three people after they discovered a 3-year-old child in a hotel room littered with syringes, methamphetamine and other drugs.

South Abington Twp. police responded to Nichols Village, 1101 Northern Blvd., on Saturday for a concerned parent’s worry that his daughter, Kayla Nicole Thurston, 20, 407 College Ave., Factoryville, was using drugs in one of the rooms.

While at the hotel, police also found out that noise complaints were made for the room Thurston, Ariel Ann Burke, 20, 46 Orchard Road, West Abington Twp., and David Paul Button, 22, 43 Orchard Road, West Abington Twp., had been staying in since Thursday.

A hotel manager also told police a young child, later identified as Burke and Button’s child, was also seen wandering the hotel halls without supervision.

Once in the hotel room, police found a metal pipe packed with marijuana on the dresser, a prescription pill bottle with seven Buprenorphine — a generic brand of Suboxone — pills and three bags of methamphetamine.

Inside a small pink metal box and a small pink plastic box, police also found “several dirty and uncapped syringes,” according to the police report.

“The box was accessible to anyone in the room … and could easily by opened by a child,” the report says, and notes, an uncapped and “loaded” syringe was also found on the floor.

Thurston, Burke and Button were charged with child endangerment and drug-related charges. They were arraigned by Magisterial District Judge Paul Keeler and their bail was set at $10,000 each.


Comments Off on Steuben County traffic stop yields active Methamphetamine lab – Tammy Kimbrough, 48, and Rian Houser, 28, of LaGrange, arrested

Two people are behind bars after a traffic stop yielded an active meth lab, the Steuben County sheriff’s department said.

Police made traffic stop shortly after 11 p.m. Saturday on County Road 50 West, just north of Indiana 127 north of Angola, the sheriff’s department said in a statement.

The driver, Tammy Kimbrough, 48, LaGrange, was charged with driving while suspended and an outstanding warrant from Clark County, Indiana, alleging failure to appear, the statement said. It said the passenger, Rian Houser, 28, also of LaGrange, was charged with domestic battery.

During the process of having the car impounded, officers found an active meth lab inside, along with chemical precursors used to manufacture meth, paraphernalia used to ingest meth and what police believe to be meth, the statement said.

Kimbrough also was charged with manufacturing and possession of meth, possession of two or more chemical precursors and possession of paraphernalia. Kimbrough was being held on $16,000 bond for Steuben County and will be transferred to Clark County when bond is posted, the statement said.

Houser was charged with manufacturing and possession of meth, possession of two or more chemical precursors, possession of paraphernalia and carrying a handgun without a license. Houser was being held without bond.

The lab was disposed of by the sheriff’s detective bureau and the Indiana State Police clandestine lab team.




The rough terrain surrounding the decommissioned laboratory and concealment measures undertaken by its owners made it impossible for surveillance helicopters to spot.

The laboratory, one of the largest of its kind to be discovered, was able to produce anywhere between 100 and 200 kilograms of crystal meth every 24 hours.

One kilogram of the illegal substance can reach prices of up to $10,000 on the Mexico-United States border.

A military spokesman said the discovery of the facilities meant the Mexican Army had delivered a harsh blow to the finances of the Sinaloa Cartel.

It was troops on foot who were searching and destroying marijuana and opium poppy plantations that came upon the narco-laboratory.

Since then, the facility has been under guard by the federal Attorney General’s office, which has coordinated its dismantling with firms specialized in the handling of highly toxic and polluting materials.

The laboratory can only be reached by walking two kilometers from the community of El Veinticuatro, population 60. No path leads there, save for a dry stream bed that at places narrows to a breadth of only half a meter.

In order to set up the laboratory — described by the authorities as rustic — members of the Sinaloa Cartel had to transport all the necessary supplies and equipment on mules or wheelbarrows, or by placing small tree trunks on the ground and using them as makeshift rails.

The facility was located on a 600-square-meter piece of land located near a ravine. Everything on the site was powered by gasoline-fueled electric generators.

The crystal meth lab was mostly open to the air, with tarps serving both as roofing and a low-tech concealment measure. Officials say the processes performed there severely polluted the area.

The chemicals used in the manufacture of the meth have seeped deep into the ground and contaminated the groundwater.

Source: Milenio (sp)







Comments Off on For Oklahoma woman in recovery from Methamphetamine and drugs, the simple life is the best life

Desha Bailey is grateful for the simple life.

She likes the small mobile home in Tulsa that she and her two children, ages 6 and 10, live in.

And she likes going to bed early and waking up every day to an assembly line job.

Because Bailey knows what it’s like to lose it all.

Struggling with drug addiction, Bailey was arrested a few years ago because of meth. She repeatedly tried to get treatment but instead got jail time.

Regardless, that led to drug court, and drug court led to freedom — from drugs, bad influences and a version of herself that Bailey didn’t like.

Today, Bailey loves herself, and she’s grateful for her second chance at life.

“The simple life is the best ever,” Bailey said. “I know, at 7:30 every night, I will be laying my head in my bed, not on the street … And I still get to be a mom. So many people who are trapped in that cycle of addiction don’t get that opportunity.”

Jail and prison are often where Oklahomans struggling with drug addiction land.

A little more than one-fourth of offenders in Oklahoma prisons, almost 7,600 people, were there for drug-related crimes in 2015.

Among the probation and parole clients, those percentages are higher — almost 8,000 people, or one-third of all probation clients, are on probation for drug-related offenses. Among parole clients, it’s almost 1,800 people, or 60 percent of the people on parole.

And prison is known to be the most expensive, least effective form of “treatment.”

For Bailey to go through drug court, it cost taxpayers $5,000 per year. Meanwhile, it would have cost $19,000 per year to send her to prison.

‘I wanted to not feel’

Bailey’s addiction started with painkillers.

A doctor prescribed tramadol, an opioid painkiller, for Bailey’s neck and back pain. One day, she realized she was taking too many pills. She got scared and stopped taking them.

Bailey started experiencing withdrawal symptoms. Her body shaking, Bailey went to the hospital to ask for help. She told them that she had stopped taking tramadol. They told her that she would just have to let the drugs run their course.

When Bailey told her doctor that she was worried about how many she was taking, he told her to start taking them again.

During this same time, Bailey moved her family to Collinsville.

There, Bailey worked long hours as a certified nursing assistant. She was lonely, and she started hanging out with a group of people who introduced her to methamphetamine.

Bailey found that the drugs numbed the pain of trauma.

As a child, Bailey moved around a lot, and she had to grow up fast. Her mother escaped an abusive husband, but that meant she had to work two jobs as a single mom. Bailey was left to care for her two younger siblings.

Bailey had moved to Collinsville to escape an abusive ex-partner, and she felt angry at herself for loving someone who hurt her so badly.

The drugs were an answer for how to block all of that out, she said.

“I wanted to not feel,” Bailey said. “I was tired of feeling stressed out. I was tired of feeling alone, and that drug became my lover, and I would have done anything for it.”

Bailey started shooting up, injecting meth by needle, because smoking it didn’t give her the high she wanted. She lost 50 pounds in three months.

On her son’s birthday in late July, Bailey showed up to his party in a sweater to cover the track marks. Everybody knew.

“And that’s really the catalyst, where it really all began to fall apart,” Bailey said. “Full circle, a year later, at that point, I had lost my apartment, I had lost my job, I had lost any amount of dignity and respect I had for myself, and I was arrested July 23.”

Bailey knew she was going to jail. A police officer pulled over Bailey and two other men and found what amounted to a mobile meth lab.

In jail, Bailey had to call her son and tell him that she would miss his birthday.

“I got to jail, and I made my first phone call,” Bailey said. “It was to my son at 3 a.m. I told him, ‘Hey, Mommy loves you; I’m not going to be at your birthday party.’ … It was hard.”

Bailey spent almost two months in jail, where for the first time in months, she had no drugs in her system. Because this was the first time Bailey had been arrested, a judge sentenced her to drug court. It saved her life.

Begging for treatment

Throughout her battle with meth, Bailey repeatedly tried to get help.

The December before she was arrested, she called a drug-treatment center in Muskogee and was told there was a 16-week waiting list. She was arrested about six months later.

Bailey said she didn’t need to go to jail to get clean and wishes treatment options were more widely available in Oklahoma.

“Most people, when they’re in active addiction, when they decide they want to get clean, they need to do it right then because the fear of failure will set in,” Bailey said. “And they will be like, ‘No, forget it.’ They will get scared.”

Dr. Elizabeth Foote, a psychiatrist at OU Physicians, said the idea that someone must hit “rock bottom” before they’re willing to accept treatment isn’t necessarily true.

Rather, some patients benefit from a type of therapy called motivational enhancement therapy, a counseling approach that helps people resolve their ambivalence about engaging in treatment and stopping their drug use, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

However, even for people willing to go to treatment, they often face two key barriers: a waiting line for services and the cost of care, even for those with health insurance.

The waiting list for state-funded residential drug treatment is more than 800 people long.

Foote said even the waiting list for her care is too long because of the lack of psychiatrists like her.

“As an addiction psychiatrist, there are only 3,500 of me, and there are over 9 million people who need help,” Foote said.

Foote regularly sees patients who cannot afford care. Treatment is costly, and sometimes, patients will have health insurance plans that don’t include substance abuse treatment.

Recently, a patient told Foote that he couldn’t afford to pay for both his mortgage and his addiction medicine. If he stops taking his medicine, his chances of relapse are high.

“He’s one example of many, where it’s not just a matter of, there’s not enough providers to go around, but it’s also the fact that treatment itself is cost prohibitive,” Foote said. “It’s a really difficult place for people.”

Getting her life back

After she was arrested, Bailey moved into a sober living house.

“And that’s where I started my actual recovery,” she said.

Bailey was ready to be put in the work to get well.

She started working a 12-step program, and she met friends who were in recovery. She built a healthy support system that was ready to help support her journey.

In May, she got sole custody of her children.

“That was the highlight of my life right there,” Bailey said. “It was amazing because I worked my butt off to get where I was.”

Bailey’s next goal is to move her family out of the trailer into a house, but for now, she’s enjoying the life she got back.

“I have earned the trust back from my family that I once lost,” Bailey said. “I have worked so hard to get to this point that I will not allow anything to take that away from me.”



Comments Off on Mother’s Methamphetamine warning: ‘It took four years to find out what was happening to my son’

Methamphetamine support groups are calling on the government to urgently fund public health advertising for P, as it does with tobacco and alcohol, to warn people of the drug’s harmful effects.


The Tauranga-based Brave Heart New Zealand group held its second public hui a fortnight ago, with 250 people turning out to voice their concerns.

It said more and more methamphetamine support groups were being established nation-wide, largely by volunteers.

Erin O’Neill co-founded the group after her son’s lengthy struggle to fight his P addiction.

“As a mother myself 15 years ago, I’d never even heard of P, let alone what a P pipe looked like,” she told Nine to Noon.

“It took four years of doctors, counselors, anger management to find out what was happening to my son.

“I just want to educate people, let them know the signs to look out for and support the whānau because without supported whānau, the addicts really don’t have as good a chance to get into rehab or to recover.”

She said one police officer she felt she could turn to was Western Bay of Plenty senior constable Lindsay Smith.

In his own time, Mr Smith had been working with families in the district affected by P for some time.

“I teach them ways of finding out and I give them a lot of tips on what to look for, where to find and how to go about that sort of thing.

“And just be generally aware, not naïve anymore. And I also get them to stop enabling. They usually enable out of love and they want to help … but I make sure they focus their help in the right way that’s not enabling.

“And so they don’t just end up just buying more drugs [for them].”

Supporting family members without anger was extremely important, he said.

“You can’t let anything slide but you’ve got to be able to confront in a safe way because methamphetamine has an awful correlation of violence as well.

“So I teach them how to do this safely or safer.”

Mr Smith said education for these families was hugely important.

A Hawke’s Bay mental health support worker said people needed to know what methamphetamine pipes looked like and how addicts behaved.

Nicky Prisk organised a hui last week in Waipukurau, where P addicts, worried families and gang members were among the 100 people who attended.

She told Nine to Noon that had prompted her to start a weekly drop-in center in the town, from today, for P addicts and families affected by the drug.

“I’ve never been a meth user myself but I lived in a [violent relationship] with my ex partner for 10 years, who was a meth user, and I knew the signs.

“And three years ago, when I found my son using it, it broke my heart and I just felt so helpless not knowing how to help him.”

Ms Prisk said the government needed to admit there was a nation-wide P crisis and more rehabilitation centers were desperately needed.



Comments Off on At least 35 killed in drug violence across Mexico

Reporting by Lizbeth Diaz in Mexico City, Uriel Sanchez in Guerrero, Jesus Bustamante in Sinaloa, Tamara Corro in Veracruz,; Editing by Michael O’Boyle, Grant McCool and Chris Reese

At least 35 people were killed over the weekend in Mexico, according to local officials, amid a widespread surge in drug gang violence that has driven murders to a level not seen since 2011.

In Sinaloa state, twelve people were killed in different incidents during the early hours of Sunday, according to local officials.

Battles between gangs have increased in the area following the arrest last year of Sinaloa cartel boss Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, who was extradited in January to the United States.

Nine people were killed in what prosecutors said on Sunday was a gun battle between rival drug gangs in the mountains of Mexico’s west coast state of Michoacan.

The shootout took place Saturday in an isolated village of the municipality of Churumuco, which borders on Guerrero state, where eight bodies were found on the main street and another in the nearby sierra, the state prosecutor’s office said in a statement.

In January 2014, the federal government effectively took over control of Michoacan for more than a year in a bid to curb violence between drug gangs and community militias that had risen up to fight extortion and kidnappings.

The region, especially Guerrero state, is the site of the worst violence in Mexico as gangs battle over fields of opium poppies, which are used to make heroin. A surge in U.S. demand for heroin has fed the violence.

Eight bodies were found in different sites around Guerrero on Sunday while another six bodies were found in Veracruz state on the Gulf of Mexico, according to local officials.

Violence in Mexico has risen to its worst since 2011. In March, there were 2020 recorded murders, the highest for any month since June 2011, according to government data.

President Enrique Pena Nieto is facing rising criticism over his handling of the spike in bloodshed.

Murders had fallen from their 2011 peak but killings began climbing again during the last two years. Guerrero is the bloodiest state while Michoacan, Sinaloa and Veracruz are in the top six states for firearms murders.

Comments Off on The expansion and threats of CJNG in Tijuana

Translated by Otis B Fly-Wheel for Borderland Beat from a Zetatijuana article

Subject Matter: CJNG, Tijuana
Recommendation: No prior subject matter knowledge required

The criminal families of Los Arzate and Los Uriate have united in a bid to contain the expansion of the CJNG in the East zone of Tijuana, which has resulted in a war, 443 people have been assassinated in four months. Operating with impunity, the cartels have initiated a campaign of intimidation against Police Chiefs, which they have done publicly with narco mantas.  The protagonists in this criminal struggle have no arrest warrants against them, even on the part of the PGJE of Baja California.

Reporter: Zeta Investigations

There had been an accord between the Cartels of Sinaloa, CJNG, and Arellano Felix. In Tijauana they had divided it up into various zones, but the CJNG have unilaterally changed and have started to move their marijuana and crystal meth through every zone in the City; recently the crews from he Sinaloa Cartel, the brothers Arzate Garcia “El Aquiles” and “La Rana”, and Los Uriate have been operating separately confronting each other, they have temporarily combined to recoup the criminal activities, in the delegations of Los Pinos, La Presa, in East Tijuana and Sanchez Taboada. These are the thoughts of a member of the State Counsel for Public Security in order to explain the wave of executions that has shook the City, and the co locations of the Narco manta threats left on bodies.

Not being a major aside, in territorial terms, the jewel in the criminal crown in the delegation of Sanchez Taboada, where for the last three years, the CJNG established its illicit centre of criminal operations.

The investigator has arrived at this conclusion from the recent declarations of detained criminals. The same reports indicate that those of the Cartel Arellano Felix are not going to enter a war between Cartels, because they have diminished operations,  that has been established in the streets by the criminals in the service of “El Karateka” Carlos Garmino Gonzalez who was detained in February of 2016.

Up until now the confrontations have not included Mexicali nor San Luis Rio Colorado, Sonora, because these cities are the ports of entry for the drugs of the CJNG. There even though they have a large presence, it only functions as a reception centre for the drugs that are transported to the Costal zone, detailed the investigator.

According to the captured drug dealers, the heads of the Sinaloa criminals consider that Jalisco “has a lot of Government” that is to say complicit authorities in the PGR, and in various states, as well as in the Police and the three levels of Government, which is the reason why in the mafia narco mantas the threats are against members of the Police corporations.

Marco Sotomayor, Secretary of Public Security in Tijuana, received a telephone call from someone who identified himself as “Rene Arzate”, who threatened his life and those close to him. In a similar manner, Jose Maria Gonzalez, Assistant Attorney General of the PGJE, was also contacted by a member of the CJNG and threatened.

Security Chiefs, Ministerial Police and the Sub-Secretary General in Tijuana have received telephone threats from narco trafficking groups. This is in spite of the deficient work that the authorities of the Coordination group are carrying out in matters of security, which has generated concern and complaints from business organizations, civil associations, and private citizens.

The only response that has been made by Governor Fransisco de Lamadrid is that he is also concerned about the growing violence; he regrets of not being able to speak about how to combat the strategy of the narco’s as stated on March 27:

“…. last month I was in Mexico City three times; twice to visit Sedena to deal with the issue and with the Attorney General of the Republic to deal with these things… it is frustrating for myself because I understand the concern of the people, however, this is a very important factor in fighting back”.

In four months in Tijuana there have been 443 murders

According to the statistics of the Executive Secretary, in the first three years of the administration of Vega de Lamadrid, homicides have incremented more than 40 percent and the second part of his administration has fared no better.

Crime has intensified with the change in municipal authorities, to the extent in Tijuana, where more than 80 percent of the executions occur, in the first four months the new city councils have surpassed 100 homicides per month, when in 2016 the highest monthly total was September with 88 murders.

In December of 2016, the first month of the Governorship of Juan Manuel Gastelum, there were 112 executions recorded; 103 violent deaths in January, another 110 corpses in February, and 118 near the end of March. A total of 443 murders and still eight months to complete his first year of municipal government.

In 2017 and until the 28th of March, 332 have been killed, 300 men and 26 women and in seven cases of incinerated bodies the sex could not be determined. In addition, 220 have been shot, 33 strangled, 36 stabbed to death, 27 beaten to death, and 10 classified as other.

The delegations with the most murders are La Presa with 47, La Presa Rural with 37, another 37 in Los Pinos and 36 in Sanchez Taboada.

All of these cases show impunity, a circumstance that has been used by drug traffickers of different cartels, to demonstrate their criminal power and threaten officials and police.

Crime reports

On Sunday, March the 26th, a manta was hung on the East Zone bridge, an area that according to the State Security Council, is being heavily contested as the Sinaloa Cartel try and recover it from the CJNG. In the manta the threat was plain.

“Now they are going to know what it is to love God in Agena land, because that is Agena land for you dirty dolls of Jalisco, your f**king chief “El JP” takes it in his lizard a** and makes you call Cabo 8 here, you feel like a**holes here, as well as Cabo 96 or Carlos Hinojosa Maldita four eyes, and your Bebe Cabo 39, bad traitor who killed his commander and turned, and you will also put your friend or your f**king cousin a**shole, for 3000 pesos, but here they area going to suck together the f**king rat traitors, and pendejos of Meher, like the worst will end up in suitcases, and all your rats. ATTE your Sargento, you know who, f**king sh** heads.”

According to official reports, Victor Hugo Mejia “El Griego”, a sicario of the Sinaloa Cartel, is who in this last year has started to call members of the CAF and ex members of the Sinaloa Cartel who currently work for CJNG as “dolls” in the Coastal Zone of Baja California.

The threats, conclude the investigators, is against Jesus Rafael Yocupicio “El Cabezon”, Juan Jose Perez Vargas “El JP” of whom they assure are not in the city. Edgar Herrera Pardo “Cabo 8”, “El Caiman” or “El Zame”. They also make reference to “Cabo 96, Carlos Hinojosa and a “Bebe Cabo 39” who have not been identified by intelligence analysts.

“El Meher”, according to unofficial data is Carlos Enriquez Castaneda, 26 years of age, assassinated by gunfire on 22nd March at Calle Sinaloa, opposite no.9 of the Los Pinos delegation; the bullet ridden corpse was found inside a vehicle of recent model with United States plates.

In respect of the authorities, they reported that Reynaldo Solano Cortez, detained on 30th of June of 2016, is part of the CJNG, and is identified as “El Cabo”; informed that his photos, name and nickname were known, he had decided to change his nickname, as did all the members of the CJNG that operate in San Luis Rio Colorado, Sonora, Mexicali and Tijuana, who now have a key assignation that started with Cabo 1, and so on.

Continuing Mafia communications

After the Manta of Sunday 26th of March, the communications from the mafia continued, the following day, Monday the 27th, on the Lomas Verdes bridge, an unidentified man was hung with a manta left tied around his neck, he had been tortured, the manta was attributed to the CJNG.

The day of threats continued on the Tuesday the 28th of March, although there were more executions, the manta messages were in smaller scale on placards; that day the Forensic Medical Service carried off six corpses, and only on two bodies were there mantas.

“This is going to happen to all those Cabos of Piolina in skirts, Atte: Joce Luis Mora Samora, this was placed on a dead body in Sanchez Taboada, and “this will happen to those who work with Las Chompas and Los Aquiles, Atte : CTNG, this was left on the body of a man shot while cycling in the El Florido subdivision.

The authorities do not consider these 6 homicides as a noticeable increase due to a new fight between criminal groups, because the output of those killed is constant, and on Thursday, March 23rd, before the mantas there were the same amount of homicides.

On Wednesday, March 29th, the statistics only recorded a single murder in the La Presa delegation, , the authorities did remove a manta, this time in a crowded area opposite the Macroplaza:

“We of the CTNG are not strangers and we fight for Tijuana to bring tranquility to our countrymen of Tijuana. You are dirty and pay you people that’s why they switch. You have left the job of Patron to your people and they laugh behind your back because you say you are the Plaza boss of Tijuana but you are not. The people of Tijuana are not stupid, and you know this motherf***er is a cabron, and a dirty cabron does not sit well with the people. With metal and iron we give it to you in the a**, and your words are drowned out, hahaha Here the CTNG is stronger than ever Atte: your worst nightmares”.

In this message, Jalisco claim to be victorious in the criminal contest against Victor Hugo Mejia “El Griego”, who in his mantas usually signs them as “Iron and Metal”.

They claim criminal control of the plaza but have no arrest warrants

To analyze the current conditions, this criminal struggle can only escalate, Cartels can continue to spread fear, terrorizing citizens, hanging mantas, killing people in the streets, leaving tortured or incinerated bodies on the street, and as mentioned none of those people mentioned have an arrest warrant against them or one requested by the PGJE.

Except for Alfonso Arzate, “Aquiles”, the Sinaloa criminal jefe who has an old arrest warrant for homicide, the rest, despite being identified, and have been mentioned in previous investigations, enjoy impunity. On the side of Sinaloa, the plaza jefe, Victoria Higo Mejia “El Griego” and “El Uriate”, also have no problems, in fact when they have been captured they are set free.

The same situation applies to the identified member of CJNG, who now claim to be CTNG, there are no arrest warrants against Manual Morales “El Gallero”, or an arrest warrant against his sicarios, Jesus Rafael Yocupicio “El Cabezon”, Juan Jose Perez Vargas “El JP”, Edgar Alejandro Herraro Pardo “El Caiman” or “El Zame”, or Kevin Gizado, Jonathan Lopez, Erasmo Valadez, Daniel Esparza, or the recently mentioned Carlos Hinojosa and Bebe Cabo 39.

Original article in Spanish at Zetatijuana