Comments Off on Mexican Police Find Border Tunnel In Tijuana, Methamphetamine Hidden In Cheese

Mexico City, Mexico:  Mexican prosecutors said on Monday that they had found a tunnel in the border city of Tijuana that led toward or into the United States.border-city-of-tijuana-ap_650x400_81477365600
The attorney general’s office did not say whether the tunnel actually reached US soil. But it did say the 563-yard (meter) long passage was equipped with ventilation and lighting.
The tunnel also had rails, apparently used to push loads of drugs through.
The tunnel was about three feet wide and four feet tall, and was built about 23 feet (7 meters) under ground level.
Prosecutors found over 2 metric tons of marijuana in packages at the house where the tunnel began on the Mexican side.

Also Monday, federal police said they found 4.2 pounds (1.9 kilograms) of methamphetamine hidden in a wheel of cheese at a package-delivery facility in Mexico City.
Federal police said on Monday that an X-ray inspection of the cheese revealed a hidden package. When the block was cut open, police found the drugs wrapped in a sheet of lead and carbon paper.
The carbon paper was apparently intended to reduce any odor. The lead may have been used to impede X-rays.
In another search, federal police in the state of Jalisco used sniffer dogs to ferret out 34 pounds (15.4 kilograms) of heroin hidden in another package at an express-delivery service. Depending on how much it was cut, the heroin could have supplied between 150,000 and 1.5 million one-gram doses.



Comments Off on Janice Salas, 28, San Antonio, found with nearly 40 grams of Methamphetamine and drugs stashed in her “groin area” when San Antonio Police Department officers noticed her “walking stiffly”

SAN ANTONIO — A woman was found with multiple drugs stashed between her thighs after police noticed she was walking “stiff” as investigators searched a vehicle she was riding in, according to an affidavit.920x920pu

Janice Salas, 28, was arrested early Tuesday on a charge of possession of a controlled substance between 4-200 grams. She was still being processed by the Bexar County Magistrate’s Office on Tuesday night.

When San Antonio Police Department officers pulled over a car in September 2015, they said there was a strong smell of burnt marijuana.

Salas, who was sitting in the passenger side, was separated from the driver as police searched the car.

One officer described Salas’ walk as “stiff” and said it looked like she was trying to keep her thighs together like she was “concealing contraband,” the warrant states.

An officer confronted Salas about her possibly trying to sneak the drugs into a correctional facility. That’s when she pulled an estimated 14 grams of heroin and 31 grams of methamphetamine from her groin area and handed it to one of the officers, the affidavit said.

Police secured Salas on a separate municipal court warrant and one charges for possession until the heroin could be tested at a later date.

The Bexar County Medical Examiner’s office later weighed the alleged heroin at 8.124 grams, less than the arresting officer’s on-scene estimate, the warrant states.


Comments Off on Tom O’Connor: Dangerous situation brewing in Ngaruawahia regarding the campaign against Methamphetamine dealers

OPINION: The campaign against methamphetamine dealers in Ngaruawahia has predictably escalated into something more sinister and dangerous than running a few undesirables out of town. It was always going to do that.

What began as an ill-advised campaign of vigilante law enforcement, supported by many in the little town, has now advanced to shots being fired at a vehicle and threats of violent retribution.

The possibilities of serious injury and fatalities now have to be considered by hard-working police on top of their work try to catch drug dealers. Chasing people out of their homes and town, without the usual requirements of a trial, conviction or legal authority, was an act of stupid bravado that only those with a similar disregard for the role of the police could support.

It may also be that the police are not as concerned about inter-gang disputes, lethal or not, than they would be if other members of the community were at risk.

Tribal Huk, the gang, for want of a better description, which claims to have taken illegal action against suspected drug dealers, has previously won well deserved admiration across the country for their work in feeding school children on a massive scale. Such apparent contradictions are not new.

We have a number of international fast food chains operating in New Zealand and it is well known by dietitians that their produce adds significantly to the obesity and ill health of many of their patrons. It is somewhat ironic that some of these companies make huge donations to hospitals and other charities which are faced with the end result of their trade in unhealthy foods. In 1930s USA the arch criminal gang leader Al Capone operated a soup kitchen for the hungry and homeless to the acclaim of many. None of these charitable works however atones for or excuses criminal, anti-social or damaging conduct. Even the legendary Robin Hood of English folklore was little more than a petty criminal, and probably a murderer, who bought the loyalty of poverty-stricken peasants with food and other essentials to avoid capture.

Underlying all this upheaval and anti-social conduct are the criminal gangs, which authorities seem powerless to eliminate or control. Of these by far the worst are those which manufacture and sell methamphetamine.

There were clear warnings some years ago that, if the methamphetamine trade in New Zealand was not vigorously stamped out, there would come a time when it would assume epidemic proportions.

Given the number of serious crimes of late in which methamphetamines are implicated and the amount which has been intercepted at our borders, it is fair to assume that day has arrived. We have a growing list of multiple murders and suicides, ruined lives and shattered families all related in some way to the availability of hard drugs and methamphetamines in particular.

We are without doubt facing an epidemic as serious and dangerous to vulnerable people as the influenza epidemics which swept through the country in the early part of last century and we need the same united and determined response.

We are therefore faced with a number of options. They include more of the same police work, detection and prosecution which probably means we will have to endure more of the same level criminal activity and harm to the community as the police are not making a lot of headway as things are. For every dealer they put behind bars and every poisonous kilo they stop at the borders, many more go undetected.

Given that our young people seem to be the target of this evil trade, more of the same is obviously unacceptable. The recent activities in Ngaruawahia therefore should be seen as more of a cry for help than anything else from that little community and there are no doubt other towns with the same problem.

Our criminal justice system is designed to either rehabilitate criminals back into the community or lock them up for the safety of others.

If anything, other than people, was putting our youngsters in such danger, the reaction would be swift and permanent but have these dealers divorced themselves from civilised society and forfeit any merciful consideration by their trade?

By deliberately targeting vulnerable young people, methamphetamine dealers are not entitled and too dangerous to be allowed to live in any civilised community. That leaves us with two further options, life in prison without parole or the reintroduction of capital punishment. The situation we face is really that serious.


Comments Off on Grindr Finally Takes Steps to Inhibit Illegal Drug Sales, Including Methamphetamine

Grindr has taken steps to inhibit the marketing of illegal drugs by users of its app, which is said to be the most widely used mobile phone hookup app for gay men in the world.Last month WEHOville called out the West Hollywood-based company for facilitating the sale of drugs such as methamphetamine. That drug, also known as meth, Tina and T, among other terms, is considered the most addictive of all drugs. Meth addiction rates are particularly high among gay men, who make up 40% of West Hollywood’s population, and studies have shown a strong connection between use of meth and infection with HIV.

A two-month study by WEHOville of Grindr and other gay hookup apps such as Scruff,, MisterX and Surge, a new West Hollywood-based app, found that only Grindr allowed its users to openly include emojis and text in their profiles that indicated they were drug users or sellers. On each night it investigated, WEHOville found an average of three meth dealers among 101 local Grindr profiles during early morning hours. WEHOville negotiated sales with several of them, who quoted prices, offered payment options and offered to deliver.
Grindr also has been called out by gay publications and websites around the world for facilitating illegal drug sales. OutinPerth, an Australian gay website, last year did its own search of drug dealers on Grindr. “It didn’t take us long to find a stack of Grindr uses offering marijuana, methamphetamines and a variety of pills,” it reported. “Profiles with images of smoke, clouds and pills were easy to spot. … In their bio lines one user promoted that a delivery service was available if you placed an order, while another boasted their product was superior to other suppliers.”

In a recent effort to post a profile on Grinder, WEHOville attempted to use the “cloud” emoji, which is a well-known symbol for meth, which is ingested by smoking the drug as well as injection with a needle. An automatic message popped up from Grindr saying the addition to the profile was “censored” and not permitted. Grindr also blocked an effort to include the words such as “meth” and “parTy” (party with T, or Tina) in the profile and blocked “T4$” (Tina for sale). However Grindr’s new screening tool still doesn’t block other profile words such as the word Tina or the acronym PNP, which means “party and play” (use drugs and have sex). Its major gay hookup app competitors do block such terms.

Given Grindr’s claim of four million users in nearly 200 countries, its decision to make illegal drug sales on its app more difficult is likely to have a worldwide impact among gay men. While some have noticed that illegal drugs also can be purchased on Craigslist and elsewhere, critics of Grindr have noted the special confluence between searches for sexual encounters and drug deals that Grindr has offered and its ease of use as a mobile app.

Grindr has refused to respond to requests from WEHOville for comment on its facilitation of meth sales and more recently on its decision to inhibit such sales by screening for meth emoji and text. In a text message on Grindr last night, WEHOville congratulated Joel Simkhai, its founder, for adding that screening. Simkhai did not respond.

Over the past few weeks Mayor Lauren Meister has attempted to arrange a meeting between her and City Manager Paul Arevalo with Simkhai but to date has not been able to. Three members of the city’s Public Safety Commission — Tory Berger, Ben Coleman and Estevan Montemayor — expressed concern about meth sales through Grindr at a recent meeting, with Montemayor saying he had put the issue on the agenda with Councilmember Lindsey Horvath’s blessing.

Otherwise, the City Council, which speaks up at Council meetings and press conferences on other issues involving the worldwide LGBT community, has remained silent on this one. Councilmember John Duran, who said he is a friend of Simkhai, told WEHOville that he would talk with him but would not reveal what was said. Councilmember John D’Amico said he was waiting for the results of Meister’s still unscheduled meeting with Simkhai.



Grindr Finally Takes Steps to Inhibit Illegal Drug Sales

Comments Off on Phuket police charge two women and four men with category 1 drug (Methamphetamine) offenses

PHUKET: Phuket Provincial Police today announced the arrests of four men and two women for narcotics offences, in the latest illegal drug crackdown in the province.

Yuttana Sulsabai, 48, was caught at his house in Tah Chat Chai in possession of 35 1_2016102412042949_qfhzsftcoiapqcayfxcsijozprdkwvrnaymtegvs_jpegamphetamine (ya bah) pills last Tuesday. Police charged him with possession and intent to sell the illicit drugs.

Three men were arrested in the Chalong area on Thursday, including a 24-year-old man previously indicted for possession of category 1 drugs in January 2014. This time he was caught with less than half a gram (0.48g) of crystal methamphetamine (ya ice).

Later that day, 25-year-old Charin Innoom was caught with 1.08 grams of ya ice and 110 ya bah pills stashed at his residence. He was charged with possession of a category 1 drug with intent to sell.

About 11pm, police arrested Tirawat Thongkerd, 21, at his home in possession of 507.45 grams of ya ice and 7,000 ya bah pills. He was also charged for possession of category 1 narcotics with intent to sell.

On Friday, Phuket City Police arrested an 18-year-old female who had two ya bah pills on her. She was charged with possession of category 1 drugs.

Another suspect, Prakaikaew Tantai, 30, who was already wanted for previous category 1 drug offences, was arrested at 10pm that evening.


Comments Off on Tijuana: State Preventative Police stash house raid reveals arsenal and 122 kilos of crystal Methamphetamine

PEP raid stash house

In the latest in a series operations by the PEP (State Preventative Police) 122 kilos of crystal and an arsenal of weapons were found in a stash house, in Colonia La Cienega, La Mesa.  This comes just days after the PEP recovered 16.5 kilos of cocaine in an arrest, a crystal laborotio, and another 16 kilos of crystal in the last 24 hours.
In addition elements of the Army, and the PEP were involved in finding a narco tunnel, near the Tijuana airport on Thursday.  The PEP has been at the forefront of most of the latest hits to criminal groups in Tijuana, mostly involving CJNG.  Their tactics, outside activities, and motivations have been questioned.
This latest seizure comes after a citizen complaint, (which is how many of these alleged seizures begin), the complaint detailed a man moving packages out of a vehicle, and into a store.  Elements of SEDENA and the PEP arrested one person at the scene, and seized 42 plastic bags containing 122 kilos of crystal, as well as boxes containing more crystal and marijuana.
Reflective of the undercurrent of killing and war in Tijuana, also found was 13 rifles, including at least one rocket launcher, nine magazines, 163 cartridges.  It isn’t unknown if these weapons were for shipment further south to areas like La Paz, Sinaloa, Jalisco, to aid in fights there.  It is likely they were to support groups in Tijuana, and likely were brought across from the United States.
It is also probable all these recent seizures are tied to one group or cell leader operating in Tijuana, given their domino like trajectory, and the involvement of the PEP.  Fall leaves and wind sweep through San Diego and Tijuana, a slight chill of death and looming killing hangs in the air, with the weather, a cold winter of executions and death….
Sources: AFN Tijuana
Comments Off on How one Mexican drug cartel banked its cash in New York City

Posted by DD Republished from ABC News

 By Tom Hays, Associated Press

In this August 2013 surveillance photo provided by the Drug Enforcement Administration, Francisco Salgado and his sister Alejandra walk on New York’s Third Avenue in midtown Manhattan where authorities say they made multiple cash deposits at banks within a few blocks of each other as part of a Mexican cartel money-laundering scheme. Authorities say the pair entered seven different banks making cash deposits of just under $10,000, all from piles of drug money they were carrying in designer purses and shopping bags. (DEA via AP) Less


In the photos, Alejandra Salgado and her little brother Francisco look like ordinary tourists strolling the streets of midtown Manhattan. He carries a shopping bag. She wears a white dress, a necklace and a leather tote slung over one shoulder.
But the outings were hardly innocent.
Over two hours, federal agents snapped pictures as the pair visited seven banks, stopping at each one to make cash deposits of just under $10,000 — all from piles of drug money stashed in their bags.
Prosecutors say the flurry of modest deposits was one of the many schemes hatched by Mexican crime cartels trying to bring billions of dollars in drug proceeds back from the United States without attracting scrutiny from banking regulators.
Drug gangs in Mexico have managed to get resources amounting to billions of dollars. In the image, the cartel recent seizure Ismael El Mayo Zambada Photo Notimex / File


 The cartels collect much of their cash proceeds from the U.S. market much the way the cocaine and other drugs come in, by sneaking it across the border.
But using regular banks remains in the mix, said James Hunt, head of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New York City office. The trick is keeping deposits small, because banks are required to report cash deposits of $10,000 or more to the government. The benefit, he said, is that if investigators do catch onto such a scheme, less cash gets confiscated. The bagmen also often face less jail time.
“It’s a little more time-intensive but it’s not as heavy a hit if you get caught,” Hunt said.
Before they went to prison late last month, the Salgados were paid to launder up to $1 million a month collected from drug wholesalers doing business with the notorious Sinaloa cartel, prosecutors said.
Investigators say Alejandra Salgado, 59, who has a Mexico City address and was in the U.S. on an expired visa, was supervised by a high-ranking member of the cartel.
Agents began watching her in New York after her name came up in an investigation of money-laundering cells in southern California, Michigan and Arizona being conducted by investigators from the DEA Drug Enforcement Task Force, Department of Homeland Security, the IRS and local agencies.
Details from the case files of federal agents and narcotics prosecutors provided to the AP offer a look inside how the Salgados operated.
At one point she had been a courier who would drive drug money over the border.
But later, she was assigned by cartel leaders to deposit funds into multiple bank accounts held under fake names, then write checks to a produce company in San Diego controlled by the cartel.
An undercover investigator wearing a wire recorded her calling the assignment a “hassle,” but safer than her previous gig.
After her handler told her there was “a lot of work” for her in New York, she and her brother, a legal resident with an Alaska address, set up shop at a Manhattan hotel in the summer of 2013.
She preferred to collect payments from local drug dealers in midtown, rather than in their home territories in the Bronx or Washington Heights, for security reasons.
“Like a friend of mine said: ‘This is a business for tough people,'” she said in a conversation with the undercover agent. “And it’s all based in trust.”
While under investigation, the siblings made at least two dozen deposits in amounts ranging from about $8,100 to $9,600 at banks located from the Upper West Side to Canal Street.
Following the money trail was worthwhile to “gain insight into the practices” of the cartels, said Special Narcotics Prosecutor Bridget G. Brennan, whose office prosecuted the case.
At Francisco Salgado’s sentencing, his lawyer, Jeffrey Taub, portrayed him as a small fish in “an unfortunate situation.”
The penalties for the launderers can be lighter than in bigger federal conspiracy cases. The brother and sister took plea deals resulting in sentences of 16 months to 4 years.
Alejandra Salgado’s attorney, Robert W. Georges, said it’s certain his client will be deported once she serves her time — a fate she’s accepted.
“She’s remorseful and looking forward to getting on with her life in Mexico,” Georges said.
Prison and deportation probably wasn’t what Salgado had in mind when she told an undercover agent, in a recorded call, that being a money courier was a nice way to make a living in a treacherous drug world.
 “I live in peace and I live tranquil,” she said.

A Short History of Mexican Drug Cartels

Posted: 24th October 2016 by Doc in Uncategorized
Comments Off on A Short History of Mexican Drug Cartels

Posted by Chuck B Almada, Republished from a San Diego Union-Tribune article Written by Kristina Davis October 21, 2016

A gun decorated with gold belonging to Mexican drug lord of the Gulf Cartel, Osiel Cardenas Guillen, is displayed in the Drugs Museum at the headquarters of the Ministry of Defense in Mexico City.

Contraband has been flowing across the Mexico border into the U.S. for the past century, beginning with alcohol during Prohibition and moving onto drugs, namely marijuana and later cocaine.

The birth of Mexico’s major cartel can be traced to Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo, nicknamed “The Godfather,” who in the 1980s became the country’s liaison with Colombian cocaine trafficker Pablo Escobar of the infamous Medellín cartel.

Gallardo went increasingly underground after the arrest of his cartel’s co-founder, Rafael Caro Quintero, for the murder of U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration Agent Enrique Camarena in 1985, and the drug lord later held a summit among Mexico’s larger drug traffickers. The meeting divided up Mexico into “plazas” — or regions — to be controlled by various drug-trafficking organizations.

The agreement solidified major players in the trade, including the Sinaloa Federation and the Arellano Félix brothers of Tijuana.

Since then, drug lords have come and gone — and new groups have risen to power as loyalties fade, political protection changes, and killings and arrests leave vacuums in leadership to be filled.

In Tijuana, law enforcement’s takedown of the Arellano Félix Organization led to a split in the group and a bloody war for control of the drug corridor. The Sinaloa, led by Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzmán and Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada, has dominated for the past several years, although the group has been the subject of a piece-by-piece takedown by U.S. authorities nationwide, including in San Diego.

The Sinaloa are also facing a new threat by the Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generación, a newer player from central Mexico that has quickly expanded its influence. The cartel, often called CJNG, has been recruiting former members of the Arellano Félix Organization and urging Sinaloa traffickers to flip.

The war on drugs has been costly, in both lives and resources.

Mexico has felt the brunt of the violence, with assassinations of drug gang affiliates, law enforcement officers, crooked officials, snitches, journalists and civilians.

Former Mexican President Felipe Calderón in 2006 waged a fierce battle against the cartels, deploying the military to the streets and the countryside to wipe out the drug trade. Violence escalated as a result.

Mexican media and researchers who have closely tracked drug violence estimate 45,000 to 55,000 organized crime-style killings in Mexico from 2007 to 2012 during Calderón’s administration.

Some of the bloodshed has spilled into the U.S.

In 2002, an enforcement crew that used to do work for the Arellano Félix Organization, called Los Palillos, moved from Tijuana to San Diego for safety. They brought with them cartel-style violence that resulted in kidnappings, killings and bodies dissolved in vats of acid in a San Ysidro horse corral. Seventeen people were indicted in San Diego; others remain at large.

Putting a figure on the economic impact of violence in Mexico and the war on drugs in general is not easy.

In 2015, the economic impact of violence in Mexico — with much of that violence believed to be drug related — was pegged at $134 billion, according to the London-based Institute for Economics and Peace.

In the U.S., untold billions have been spent combating traffickers.

The U.S. has worked to tighten security at the border, an effort that has included a massive hiring push by the Border Patrol and deployments of National Guard troops to the border.

In 2007, a formalized partnership was developed between the U.S., Mexico and Central America to go after the drug trade. From 2008 to 2015, the U.S. set aside $2.3 billion for Mexico under the agreement.

Would legalizing marijuana in California have a visible effect on law enforcement, on the courts, on government coffers, on taxpayers?

No one knows the answer for certain. It could be one question voters consider as they head to the polls Nov. 8.


Borderland Beat Reporter Chuck Bernabe Almada


Comments Off on Man high on Methamphetamine, stabs and kills his 13-month-old infant daughter, sets North Hollywood, California apartment on fire

On Friday, a man who was reportedly on methamphetamine, allegedly stabbed and killed his infant daughter, who was just 13 months old, then set the North Hollywood, California apartment he lived in on fire, before plunging the knife he used on his daughter into his own chest. The man’s daughter died from the stab wound, but the man has survived, and is being treated for his self-inflicted injury at a local hospital.

Initial reports stated that the man threw his infant daughter out of his North Hollywood apartment window after he stabbed her. Updates have confirmed that did not happen, but the young girl succumbed to the stab wound inflicted by her own father while they were inside the apartment, located, according to a Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) alert, “at 13154 Vanowen St.”

Man Stabs and Kills Infant Daughter Then Sets North Hollywood Apartment on Fire

Police initially were called to the apartment building, the LA Daily News reported, responding to a call regarding an “assault with a deadly weapon/man with a knife.” The infant daughter’s father was described as being “between the age of 25 and 35” and under the influence of methamphetamine.

The police said that the man, who has not yet been identified, will be booked after he is cleared my medical personnel. According to Patch, the infant girl’s father has been arrested on suspicion of being responsible for her death.

Officer Drake Madison with the Los Angeles Police Department said that the infant “girl’s mother rushed the toddler to a hospital, where she later died. According to LAFD’s Brian Humphrey, “another patient was believed taken to a hospital by a private car.”

Police on the scene said the suspect left the apartment building with a knife sticking from his chest. Authorities reported that an adult woman “was treated at the scene for an acute but not life-threatening illness.”

The LA Daily News reported that the man locked himself in his North Hollywood apartment before he set fire to it. He then “jumped from a second-floor unit” on fire, with a knife sticking out of his chest. The police approached the suspect in order to arrest him and “confronted him in an alley.” LAPD Capt. Steve Carmona said that the man appeared to be “combative,” according to Patch.

A man in North Hollywood, California, allegedly stabbed and killed his 13-month-old infant daughter and set his apartment on fire and jumping from a second-floor window after stabbing himself in his chest. The LAFD stated that the fire the man allegedly started did not spread any further than an upstairs apartment “and the attic of a two-story 28-apartment building.” The apartment complex remained on lockdown as of early evening while police continued their investigation.



Man Stabs and Kills Infant Daughter Then Sets North Hollywood Apartment on Fire


Comments Off on Displaced Longmont apartment tenants in limbo amid Methamphetamine remediation in Boulder County

Once methamphetamine residue is wiped clean from air ducts and vents, Peg Harper wants to return to her former ground-floor apartment in Longmont’s Cloverbasin Village.

“I love that unit,” she said. “I will not give it up.”

On Oct. 11, she and her husband, Gary, were forced out within five hours’ notice after Longmont code enforcers received test20161021__23tcaconw-2 results taken from unit 5-104, caddy-corner to the former residence of a woman charged with elder abuse, and in part, meth use.

“I figured, we’re still alive,” Harper said. “I want that unit back.”

The Harpers’ unit was the fifth condemned by Longmont, and three more units in Building 5 have since been declared meth-infected by Boulder County Public Health’s industrial hygienist Michael Richen.

Richen said he doesn’t expect to find meth in any other apartment, after detecting it in rooms of three apartments and in the HVAC units of six others nearby unit 5-101. But he said he’s never seen contamination this “extensive.”

“I’ve seen units on the side affected, like one unit affected…but not this many,” Richen said.

The displaced tenants of Building 5, were suddenly pressed to either relocate across the complex, temporarily reside in a motel or break their lease entirely to find housing elsewhere.

Individual situations vary, but each evacuated apartment is awaiting cleanup.

Denise Todd, spokeswoman for Denver-based Mission Rock Residential, which manages Cloverbasin Village, said as soon as they received positive test results, they contracted with a vendor for meth remediation.

“It’s certainly an unfortunate incident when something like this happens,” Todd said. “We take our guidance from the board of health and we do everything that they tell us to do. It certainly has a financial impact, but our main concern is looking out for the best interest of our residents.”

Todd said tenants can expect to return in between seven and 10 days, after a cleanup estimated to cost $20,000. She said she does not know what all is included in the remediation.

“We really do rely on the experts and the city to guide us,” she said. “It would be remiss for us to try to understand every aspect of this.”

First round

Gil Allarid’s was the first unit tested and subsequently condemned.

For six years, unit 5-201 was where he lived with his granddaughter, daughter and daughter’s boyfriend, until he was asked to leave Aug. 26.

Prior to the condemnation, Allarid said he had contacted Boulder County Public Health with questions about why unit 5-101 below him — where a woman named Shela Wagner once lived — was being gutted.

Wagner had been arrested in February after she was investigated for theft from the elderly man in her care. The home where he lived in the 1400 block of South Terry Street also was condemned, after tests showed it 105 times above the acceptable limit for methamphetamine contamination, according to past reports.

She is scheduled to be sentenced in the case in December, though there are no direct drug charges pending or expected by Longmont police, Detective Stephen Desmond said.

Todd said this incident was a first for the complex, which is a participant of the police’s Crime Free Multi-Housing Program.

“In property management, there’s so much that happens and when it’s someone’s private home behind closed doors, it’s like20161021__23tcaconw-3_400 anything can happen,” Todd said.

Allarid said he had his suspicions about activities in the apartment below him, and requested his own apartment be tested.

“When there’s this type of contamination, it could seep into the walls and it could affect other units,” he said.

As 64-year-old Allarid was driving to meet a friend for dinner on the last Friday in August, he found out he would have to vacate his place within a few hours.

Meth had in fact contaminated his apartment, with levels the highest in the guest room bathroom and air intake system.

“That was the bathroom my granddaughter and I used every day,” he said.

According to a 45-page methamphetamine preliminary assessment released Aug. 22 by Lakewood-based DS Environmental Consulting Inc., in the decontamination of Wagner’s former unit, the combustion air intake for the furnace in Wagner’s and Allarid’s unit were in close proximity to the attic, which was sampled and found to be contaminated with methamphetamine above the cleanup standard.

Each of the eight condemned units has received a similar report, detailing contamination levels and hotspots as well as recommendations to clean furniture and clothing.

He said the four of them left behind bigger items, such as mattresses, and opted instead for pillows, blankets, towels and other essentials, not knowing when they could return.

Most of their items are still in the apartment,he said, which awaits meth remediation.

After temporarily residing in a townhouse at the complex, they found other housing in north Longmont, where they’re still sleeping on air mattresses.

Replacing the mattresses will be expensive, Allarid said.

He said he has hired legal counsel to help him seek up to $7,500 in reimbursement for moving costs and the furniture they’ll permanently leave behind out of precaution, even though the report said it should be clear.

But most of all, he said he is concerned about the health and safety of his family and neighbors.

Second round

Units 5-102, 5-103 and 5-202 were the next three apartments condemned by Michelle Cogswell, Longmont substandard housing inspector, on Sept. 30.

Just two months prior, Tyrone Rivers had moved into unit 5-102 with his family. He said testers sampled the air quality and not long after they were asked to move due to meth contamination in the HVAC system, but not in the apartment itself.

“They basically told us to pack for a mini vacation,” Rivers said.

The Rivers bought air mattresses and were relocated to a vacant apartment, where they plan to stay.

“They haven’t told us anything else,” Rivers said. “It’s just what it is now.”

The most recent tenant of unit 5-103, who wished to remain unnamed, said she also was relocated to a vacant unit. The woman — who moved in after Wagner was arrested — said she has been given a discount on rent and provided with free utilities in the meantime.

She said she was told fire insurance would cover the cost of damaged belongings, but she does not think it’s fair.

“It’s not a fire,” she said. “It was next door to the cleanup.”

According to the report from unit 5-103, the most meth contamination out of the nine apartments was detected in the master bedroom, master bathroom exhaust fan and supply, living room, kitchen, hallways and guest bedroom.

“It’s possible there was another user,” Richen, Boulder County Public Health industrial hygienist, said. Or it was holes poked in the walls during the gutting of Wagner’s old apartment.

Roger Boyd, former maintenance supervisor and tenant of 5-102, said he was concerned the units close to Wagner’s also were infected, and reported it to the property management. He said he was told testing was too expensive, which is why it went unnoticed until Allarid’s request.

Boyd, upon being fired for what he believes was interpreted as tattling, also had to move out with his wife, who had not been feeling well for the past two months. He thinks it could’ve been meth contamination, but has not proved it.

“I’m not real sure if that was what it was,” Boyd said. “I know she was having lung infections because she never had those before.”

Todd said Boyd was not fired for “whistleblowing.”

Another woman, who lived in a unit on the second floor, said she would be interested in talking about her experience, but not this week because she was waiting to hear back from an attorney.

Third and fourth rounds

The Harpers’ unit was condemned in the third round of notices Oct. 11, along with 5-203 and 5-303.

The couple — in their late 60s — relocated to a Super 8 Motel, where they stayed for 10 days by dwindling savings.

“We chose to come to the motel for me to take care of my husband and for him to take care of me,” Peg Harper said.

But the cost of boarding their dog and paying night to night for a room was too much, so Peg Harper asked the property managers if something could be done.

She said she has limited mobility and her husband is a disabled Vietnam veteran, so relocating has been hard.

On Thursday, they moved into what was an empty unit in Building 12 at the complex. It has minimal furnishings, but Peg Harper said it’s sufficient while their unit is cleaned up.

“We’ve got dishes and pots and pans and probably all the essentials,” Peg Harper said.

She said she was told it will take up to 10 days before they can return to their apartment that’s furnished to their likings, comfortable and dog-friendly.

Having worked in real estate, she said, she understands the apartment complex is doing their best to accommodate everyone’s situations.

“It’s not the kind of thing you run into every day,” she said. “I have to say that out of all the years we’ve lived in that complex and all the different management companies, this company has been the best.”

Two floors above, Jose Silva was asked to pack a week’s worth of belongings, expecting to return soon.

It’s going on two weeks now, but he’s hopeful he can move back in with his girlfriend, Marlene, next week. He said he was told his apartment is scheduled to be cleaned soon.

“It’s a pain in the butt eating on the floor and eating out of paper plates, but other than that we’re OK,” he said.

He said Richen told them with the low-level contamination, he should not be concerned about health. He said the apartment complex, Longmont and Boulder Health have been helpful in answering their questions.

“Our plan was to sign a lease for another year…so I’m glad things worked out for us,” Silva said.

This past Tuesday, unit 5-304 was condemned. Richen expects it will be the last.


Comments Off on After nearly disappearing, Methamphetamine arrests make comeback in the Golden Triangle

Methamphetamine arrests are on the rise in the Golden Triangle.

In fact, the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office’s narcotics unit is seeing meth on the street daily, according to Capt. Archie Williams, the unit’s commander. Since Sept. 1, LCSO and Columbus Police Department have arrested a combined 19 suspects for possession of meth, some with intent to distribute.  l_52u821022201662912pm

Where agents used to see cocaine, marijuana and “dirty meth” — the sandy-colored home-manufactured methamphetamines — they now see ice, the pure form of methamphetamines, Williams said. And it’s being trafficked into the area from outside the state.

The same is happening in Clay County, according to Clay Sheriff Eddie Scott.

“There’s been a major increase in it,” Scott said. “Within the last year, we’re actually seeing more methamphetamines than we are cocaine.”

Manufacturing nearly non-existent

Meth manufacturing was a problem in the Golden Triangle and the state until 2010 when the Mississippi Legislature banned the sale of pseudoephedrine without a prescription. Pseudoephedrine is the main ingredient in methamphetamines.

“The manufacturing went to nothing after that,” Scott said. “What dope they could make didn’t have (any) quality to it. Most of your ice now is coming out of super labs out of Mexico, funneling through Texas, Arizona.”

The same goes for the state as a whole. Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics reported 479 clandestine methamphetamine labs in the state in 2010, 314 of which were operational. The following year, the number plummeted to 254, with only 99 operational.

MBN has reported 12 labs so far this year. Only one was operational.

The law was never intended to get rid of methamphetamine sales or usage, said Sam Owens, executive director of MBN. Instead, it was intended to decrease the risks of fires, explosions, dangerous chemicals and other hazards from meth manufacturers’ labs.

“It has virtually stopped that,” Owens said. “We rarely come across (operational labs).”

MBN Methamphetamine Coordinator Eddie Hawkins said banning the sale of pseudoephedrine without a prescription is the most effective law he had ever seen.

“I’m very proud that we have passed this legislation to combat the meth problem that we have here because our guys were working three and four meth labs a night at one time,” he said. “And we were charging people that were users. We were dealing with the problem form the wrong end. We needed to cut the head of the snake off by going after the traffickers.”

Trafficking from Mexico

But the drop in local manufacturing hasn’t affected cartels that traffic the drug into the state from Mexico and western states. In the last year or so, law enforcement agencies all over the Golden Triangle have seen increases in arrests for possession and distribution of methamphetamine.

“Basically what happened is they cranked up the super labs in Mexico and just started pumping more in here,” Scott said.

And that increase is not just relegated to the Golden Triangle, Owens said. Over the last four or five years, methamphetamines have overtaken cocaine as the most common drug in Mississippi, though Owens said he still thinks cocaine and prescription drugs are the bigger health risk due to the risk of overdosing.

Golden Triangle law enforcement officers find users with anywhere from one gram to an eight ball, or 3.5 grams, Williams said. Anything more than .1 grams constitutes a felony possession charge.

“It’s not uncommon for us now to seize a pound of meth,” Scott added.

Distribution arrests are not quite as common and take a little more time, Williams said. Investigators have to gather plenty of evidence and obtain warrants to make sure authorities are able to take down an entire operation.

But they’re there, Williams said. Where you have users, you have dealers.

And consumers like the ice even more than they liked the homemade drug, Owens said.

This is because the ice is a purer form of the drug than the homemade “dirty meth,” which was made basically by throwing ingredients into a bottle, said Capt. Brent Swan with the CPD Criminal Investigations Division.

“[Ice has] got more potent effects for a shorter time than the homegrown,” he said.

And while methamphetamine overdoses are not as common as overdoses on cocaine, it’s still so addictive that users can’t kick the habit unless they get some kind of rehab, Swan said.

CPD focuses on preventing people from becoming addicted in the first place.

“Our … focus is to educate young people, teenagers, to absolutely stay away from it,” he said.


Comments Off on Weekend traffic stop leads to Indiana State Police finding 3 pounds of Methamphetamine in Floyd County; Jose Rodriguez-Palma arrested

FLOYD COUNTY, Ind. — A weekend traffic stop nets three pounds of meth and lands an Indianapolis man behind bars.

Indiana State Police said they pulled over Jose Rodriguez-Palma Saturday morning on I-265 in Floyd County for traffic jose-web-0105-1477235381violations.

After a K-9 searched his jeep, troopers said they found three pounds of suspected meth hidden in the back of his vehicle.

Officials said the approximate street value of the drugs is more than $150,000.

Rodriguez-Palma is facing charges of possession and dealing methamphetamine, among others.


Comments Off on 29-year-old woman lost her ‘soul’ when Dale Aymont, 45, of Winnipeg, got her hooked on Methamphetamine and then sold her for sex to support his own drug habit

A Winnipeg man who admitted to hooking a woman on methamphetamine and then selling her for sex to support his own drug habit has been sentenced to five years in prison.

Dale Aymont is the first Manitoban to be sentenced under the federal government’s six-year-old human trafficking legislation. Aymont, 45, pleaded guilty to one count each of trafficking in persons and trafficking in persons for a material benefit and a related count of possession of methamphetamine for the purpose of trafficking.1297847998217_originaltdjdtjrujetjt

Court heard Aymont met the 29-year-old victim, an occasional escort and meth user, in Brandon in May 2014 through mutual drug contacts. Within days of their meeting, Aymont hooked the woman on liquid methamphetamine.

Aymont quickly took control of the woman, coercing her to advertise her sexual services “in a much more formal and professional way” online, Crown attorney Daniel Chaput told court.

It was Aymont who arranged the meetings with men, and Aymont who kept almost all of the money — as much as $1,000 a day — which was then used to buy more drugs.

Aymont used “force and coercion” and “violence and threats” to keep the woman under his control, Chaput said.

“My soul was taken,” the woman wrote in a victim impact statement provided to court. “I was a lifeless being walking the earth.”

Winnipeg police arrested Aymont in June 2014 after receiving a tip he and another man were driving to Brandon to traffic methamphetamine, federal Crown prosecutor Ken Hawkins told court. An examination of Aymont’s cell phone uncovered “a treasure trove of evidence” of drug trafficking.

“The drug trafficking went hand in hand with his human trafficking,” Hawkins said.

A subsequent investigation led police to the Brandon woman, putting an end to Aymont’s victimization of her the following August.

Defence lawyer Brett Gladstone described Aymont as a “fiercely intelligent” and “otherwise law-abiding” man laid low by a powerful drug addiction.

Sources previously confirmed to Postmedia that Aymont was a human resource consultant with a Winnipeg media outlet for a short time before leaving the position. Prior to that, according to a social media profile, he worked for Child and Family Services as a senior consultant from 2011-13.

“This case … highlights the terrifying nature of this drug and what it can do to an individual,” Gladstone said. “This is a situation that can happen to anyone.”

Crown and defence lawyers jointly recommended the five-year sentence in a plea bargain that recognized frailties in the Crown’s case. Court heard the victim’s addiction issues and shifting allegiance to the accused left the Crown uncertain it could secure a conviction at trial.

Aymont said it was only when he “emerged from the fog” of his drug addiction that he recognized the “destructive impact” his actions had on the victim, who he called a friend.

“I used friendship to satisfy my own needs, my own addiction,” Aymont said. “I have an incredible amount of regret for that.”

Justice Chris Martin “reluctantly” agreed to the joint recommendation, saying he would otherwise have sentenced Aymont to between eight and 10 years in prison.

“To knowingly and selfishly destroy another person’s life is horrible,” Martin said. “To be very frank, I’m having a great deal of trouble accepting this was done under the guise of being ‘in a fog.'”

Aymont received credit for time served, reducing his remaining sentence to two years.



Comments Off on Chilling CCTV footage shows Breaking Bad-obsessed crystal Methamphetamine addict, Stefano Brizzi, 50, buying a bucket ‘to fill with acid to dissolve the body the policeman, Gordon Semple, 59, he murdered after meeting on Grindr’
  • Satanist is on trial for murdering policeman he met for sex on Grindr
  • Court has heard he attempted to dissolve victim’s body in acid
  • Prosecutor reveals bloodstained chopsticks were found at his flat
  • Defendant claims PC was killed in a sex game which went wrong

CCTV footage shows a Breaking Bad-obsessed crystal meth addict buying a plastic bin which he allegedly used to dissolve the body of a policeman he met on Grindr.398b708f00000578-3859222-stefano_brizzi_is_accused_of_murdering_and_trying_to_destroy_the-m-101_1477052148406

Satanist Stefano Brizzi, 50, allegedly killed PC Gordon Semple, 59, after organizing a drug-fueled orgy on the gay dating site.

Jurors in his trial were today shown footage of him allegedly shopping for tools to help him dispose of the body, some of which was dissolved in acid and other parts of which may have been eaten, the court has heard.

Images from another camera shows PC Semple shortly before he is thought to have been strangled by Brizzi.

The court heard today that Brizzi had placed a leg in a roasting tin in the oven, and traces of PC Semple’s DNA were also found on a set of chopsticks.

A bone believed to belong to the PC was found with a suspected bite mark in a kitchen bin, the prosecutor said.

DNA from the alleged victim was found on the blade of a blender, cooking pot, chopping board and grease in the oven of the Italian’s kitchen, the Old Bailey heard.

Prosecutor Crispin Aylett QC told jurors: ‘So, the defendant cannot have confined himself to dismembering Gordon Semple and disposing of his body either by acid in the bath or else in the dustbins.3996a0a700000578-3859222-image-m-159_1477066184678

‘Instead, the prosecution suggest it would be open to the jury to find that the defendant cooked part of his body and ate it.’

PC Semple, 59, was on duty when he arranged to meet Brizzi, via Grindr, for ‘hot, dirty’ sex on the afternoon of April 1.

Following the alleged murder, neighbors on the Peabody Estate in south London noticed a ‘revolting smell‘ coming from Brizzi’s flat.

On April 7, Brizzi was described by his neighbor Martin Harris as being ‘cool as a cucumber’ when he stopped by to inform him police had been called ‘because of the stench’, the court heard.

Two officers arrived to find bottles of chemicals scattered in the hall and ‘blue-green liquid’ in the bath with ‘flesh-colored globules floating in the water’, Mr Aylett said.

One of the officers looked inside a bin liner on the floor and saw a human hand and part of a spine, the court heard.

The defendant said he had HIV and had been told by Satan to ‘kill, kill, kill’,the prosecutor said.

Talking to the officers at his flat, Brizzi allegedly said: ‘I was talking online about Satan as a fetish – and crystal meth takes me to Satan.

‘I am from a Catholic family so when I found I was gay, I found out I was from Satan. I loved crystal meth and wanted to meet someone who talked about Satan.’

He explained that he did not like Mr Semple, who had been fat and ugly, the court heard.

Brizzi later allegedly claimed he had disposed of some body parts he had been unable to break up by taking them on his bicycle to a quiet spot by the River Thames.

He allegedly told police he had been unable to dissolve the ‘flabbery’ bits with chemicals and had tried to flush them down the toilet.

Asked what was still at the flat, Brizzi said there was a foot, hand and leg ‘which I tried to roast as well’, the court was told.

PC Semple’s head was also at the flat but Brizzi flushed the lungs down the toilet, the court heard.

A human foot was later discovered by the Thames riverbank at Bermondsey Wall and body matter recovered from drainpipes in Brizzi’s block.

Officers returned to the flat days later and recovered from his computer items including The Satanic Bible ebook, the jury heard.

Inside the oven was a pool of PC Semple’s body fat and there was evidence of heat damage to one of his legs, the court heard.

Some body parts, including internal organs, muscle, fat and skin were not recovered, the court was told.

While in the custody suite after his arrest, Brizzi allegedly said: ‘I thought I was getting away with it. I had nearly finished but I took a shot (of crystal meth). I was going to finish the job today.

‘As you can see, this man was a very big man and all I have left is two buckets.’

As an officer typed up the custody record, the defendant added: ‘And another thing. Just one thing, my bathtub has been unusable for day. I would appreciate a shower.’

A post-mortem examination revealed evidence of GHB and sedative ketamine in PC Semple’s remains.

Brizzi denies murder but has admitted obstructing a coroner by dismembering and disposing of the body.



Comments Off on Robert Matthew Wittal’s Murder Trial Offers Intimate Glimpse into Flathead Valley’s Methamphetamine Drug ‘Subculture’

Flophouses. Enforcers. Junkies.

Prosecutors used those terms this week during Robert Matthew Wittal’s murder trial to paint an intimate picture of methamphetamine’s pervasive impact on the Flathead Valley.rhsrhseryhsytwerytwer

“You’re going to hear from people who live a different lifestyle than most of you,” said Deputy County Attorney John Donovan in his opening statements of the trial. “A lifestyle of drug use and violence. A lifestyle that you may not even realize exists in your community.”

While law enforcement officials have been saying for months that methamphetamine has become a major concern in the valley, the four-day trial offered the public a glimpse into the issue. Flathead County Sheriff Chuck Curry said it was an accurate depiction of what his officers are seeing on the streets.

“That subculture exists here and it’s often out of sight of most people,” Curry said.

“(Methamphetamine) is a valley-wide problem, not just one house in Evergreen,” he added, referring to the home at the center of the Wittal trial.

During the trial, prosecutors presented evidence and testimony that showed how Wittal and his three co-defendants — David Toman, Melisa Crone and Chris Hansen — were deeply involved in the valley’s drug culture. Crone’s house on South Cedar Drive in Evergreen was called a “flophouse” where people would frequently come to use and buy drugs. The victim in the case, Wade Allen Rautio, was stabbed to death after he had allegedly stolen drugs and money from the defendants.

“There are other groups like this out there,” Curry said.

Curry said violent crime related to the drug trade is still rare in the valley, but it is a concern. Property crime, however, is on the rise, and Curry said most burglaries and robberies are related to drugs.

The amount of drugs in the valley has also skyrocketed in the last decade, exceeding even the levels found during the methamphetamine epidemic of the early 2000s that spurred the well-known Montana Meth Project prevention program. In 2014, the Northwest Montana Drug Task Force, a law enforcement coalition that covers Flathead, Lincoln, Mineral, Sanders and Glacier counties, took nine pounds of methamphetamine off the street. In 2015, it purchased or confiscated 15 pounds of meth worth $5 million. So far this year, the task force has taken in 27 pounds of the drug.

Mark Mulcahy, commander of the drug task force, said his deputies have been especially busy this year, and he doesn’t see the work slowing down anytime soon. He worries that an increase of drugs in the valley could lead to an increase in violent crime.

“This is still a really nice place to live,” he said. “And we want to keep it that way.”




Comments Off on Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office narcotics investigators arrest Melissa Bonnette, 47, of Marksville, on Methamphetamine charges

Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office narcotics investigators arrested Melissa Bonnette, 47, of Marksville on Friday on charges of selling methamphetamine at her home on Cardinal Loop near Fifth Ward.

Sheriff Doug Anderson said investigators seized 1.5 ounces of suspected methamphetamine, a large quantity of Methadone and Hydrocodone pills and $3,800 cash during a search of the home. The cash is suspected to be proceeds from the sale of illegal narcotics.

Bonnette was booked into Avoyelles Detention Center #1 on three counts of possession of a Schedule II drug with the intent to distribute. Bond has been set at $4,000.00.


Comments Off on Deputies make largest ever Methamphetamine seizure in Onslow County – 10.6 pounds – Jose Angel Garcia-Ortiz arrested

JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – The Onslow County Sheriff’s Office seized 10.6 pounds of crystal meth worth $440,000 Thursday, the largest meth seizure ever in Onslow County.garcia-ortizjose-angel

Jose Angel Garcia-Ortiz of Onslow County was arrested during a traffic stop after deputies said they received tips he was selling methamphetamine and found the crystal meth in his possession.garcia-ortiz-seizure-2

He is facing numerous methamphetamine trafficking and possession charges.

Hs is being held at the Onslow County Detention Center in lieu of $1 million bail.





Deputies make largest ever meth seizure in Onslow County


Comments Off on 7 pounds of Methamphetamine, nearly $200K cash seized during Washington County bust; Josue Valdovinos-Moreno, 24, arrested

WASHINGTON CO., Ore. (KOIN) — Authorities seized a gun, nearly $200,000 in cash and 7 pounds of methamphetamine while executing a search warrant Monday.valdovinos-moreno

It happened at the Quatama Village Apartment Complex where 24-year-old Josue Valdovinos-Moreno was found, Washington County Sheriff’s Office said.

Numerous agencies including the Oregon High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Program assisted in the warrant execution and arrest of Valdovino-Moreno.

A narcotic-detecting K9 found 7 pounds of methamphetamine at the apartment. The street value of the drug was determined to be over $50,000, deputies said.drug-bust-k9

Authorities also seized a semi-automatic handgun and $194,500 in cash.

Valdovino-Moreno was arrested for delivery of a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance. He is currently being held on $50,000 bail.




7 lbs of meth, nearly $200K cash seized during arrest


Comments Off on Florida Youth Pastor, Ron (“Romeo”) Cooper, Charged With Prostituting Teenage Boys, Drugging Them With Crystal Methamphetamine

A Florida youth pastor has been arrested and charged with forcing four teenage boys into prostitution by telling them that they could make money modeling and threatening them if they didn’t agree to have sex with male clients he met on the internet.

According to a Miami police report, Ron Cooper, who goes by the nickname “Romeo,” sex trafficked four boys aged 16 to 18, who were forced to have sex for money at three ron-cooperdifferent Miami-Dade County hotels and at an adult bookstore in Miami.

According to the Miami Herald, the four victims told the police that they met Cooper through a friend and he allegedly offered to pay them for modeling.

When the boys met with the photographer in a hotel room, they were instructed that they needed to engage in sex to get paid. All of the victims said that they had not engaged in sexual activities with other men before meeting Cooper.

Cooper appeared before Judge Mindy Glazer in court on Wednesday for a bond hearing, as he faces charges of human trafficking, having sex with a minor and false imprisonment, according to the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office Human Tracking Unit.

“We have four victims in this case that have come forward. They have all made similar statements, stating that Ron has forced them to engage in sexual activity with other males against their will,” a prosecutor told Glazer in court.

Cooper has also been accused of placing the boys’ photos on websites like Craigslist and and in order to obtain more clients. Cooper arranged for the boys to meet them at motels and the Miami Playground, an “adult mega store.”

According to the police report, Cooper often met the victims at the store. The Herald reports that the boys were not only threatened and blackmailed but also drugged before they took part in the sex acts. The victims told police that Cooper even threatened to kill them.

All the victims said that Cooper would often drug them with crystal methamphetamines to make them sexually aroused. He also allegedly gave them erectile dysfunction pills, anxiety pills and alcohol.

Although the victims charged the clients anywhere from $40 to $100, Cooper routinely stuck around and forced the victims to pay him half or more of what they earned after they were finished.

Along with forcing the boys to have sex with other men, Cooper is also accused of raping and assaulting the boys.

“The boys went through with the sex act because they were afraid of the defendant,” the prosecutor said, according to the local CBS affiliate. “The defendant has in the past physically grabbed them and yelled at them in their faces. He also has threatened to go to their families and basically extort them and blackmail them stating that he was going to show them the photographs he had taken and the advertisements for sex he himself had posted.”

Glazer ruled that Cooper is a danger to society and will be held without bond.

“We know that there are more victims out there and we are hoping that this press exposure will lead people to come forward,” Miami-Dade State County Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle told CBS Miami.

According to NBC Miami, Cooper’s Facebook page indicates that he is a pastor at the Good News Little River Baptist Church.

The Christian Post attempted to reach out to the Good News Little River Baptist Church to get confirmation that Cooper is a pastor there. However, no one at the church could be reached by phone before press time.

According to an assistant public defender, Cooper is a youth pastor who has been in the community for about three years and is also employed at a Wal-Mart.




Comments Off on Quarter pound of Methamphetamine seized during Rimrock home search – Haili Teresa Herbert, 39, and Mark Stanley Marszalek, 57, arrested

RIMROCK – Detectives found over a quarter of a pound of crystal methamphetamine during a search in a home in the 3900 block of Beaver Vista Road in Rimrock, according to a news release from Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office. marszalek_and_herbert_t715

Around 9:30 p.m. Oct. 13, the Partners Against Narcotics Trafficking Task Force, along with personnel from the YCSO, served a search warrant seeking evidence of illegal drug use and possession for sales at the residence, stated the release.

Dwight D’Evelyn, media relations coordinator of YCSO, said Mark Stanley Marszalek, 57, and Haili Teresa Herbert, 39, were located inside the residence during the execution of the search warrant.

The task force had been investigating reports that Marszalek had been selling methamphetamine for over a year and a half, said YCSO.

As the search continued, said D’Evelyn, detectives found over 128 grams of crystal methamphetamine along with related drug paraphernalia that included unused bindle baggies and a digital scale.

Detectives also located numerous rifles and handguns inside the home along with a home surveillance system, among other items, according to the release.

Both Marszalek and Herbert were taken into custody without incident, said D’Evelyn, and were booked in at the Yavapai County Detention Center and charged with possession of dangerous drugs, possession of dangerous drugs for sale, possession of drug paraphernalia, and misconduct involving weapons. Both Marszalek and Herbert have been released – each posting a $5000 bond, according to the news release.





Comments Off on Texas Department of Public Safety seizes 40 pounds of Methamphetamine during traffic stop in Victoria County – Jose Antuna, 24, from Mexico, arrested

More than $3 million worth of methamphetamine was seized in Victoria County last Friday after a DPS trooper conducted a random traffic stop and became suspicious of the driver’s behavior.040fa650-40f9-412f-b33d-38cc0f39323f-large16x9_car

One brick of crystal methamphetamine and eight containers of liquid methamphetamine made up the 40 pounds of narcotic authorities seized during the traffic stop on Oct. 14.

According to a release from TxDPS, a trooper pulled 24-year-old Jose Antuna over on U.S. Highway 59. After talking with Antuna, the trooper “suspect(ed) criminal activity” and called for a K9.

Antuna, who is from Mexico, was taken to the Victoria County Jail, according to the release.


Comments Off on Family (i.e., father and son – Dennis Scott Smith, 51, and Dylan Scott Smith, 21) charged in Chestnuthill Methamphetamine lab case

A father and son have been charged after evidence of methamphetamine production reportedly was found in their Sun Valley Estates home in Chestnuthill Township in June.

Charges were filed Oct. 13 against Dennis Scott Smith, 51, and son Dylan Scott Smith, 21, both of Barry’s Road. However, as of Oct. 20, neither had undergone the arraignment process necessary to schedule a district court hearing to determine if the charges should be sent to county court for trial.

Both Smiths are charged with making, delivering or possessing meth with intent to deliver, operating a meth lab, possessing ingredients for making meth, risking a catastrophe, unregistered possession of a controlled substance, drug paraphernalia possession, reckless endangerment and disorderly conduct.

At 9:41 a.m. June 9, police responded to a report of a woman being held against her will, injected with heroin and raped at the Smith residence.

When arriving there at 10:13 a.m., police encountered Devin Franco, no age or address listed. Franco told police his friends, the Smiths, lived there and that they had gone out for a drive.

Franco told police he didn’t know when the Smiths would be back and that he alone was in the residence at the time. This proved false when police noticed someone else’s hand pulling back a bed sheet covering a window and heard a noise indicating other people were in the residence.

Police entered the residence and encountered the Smiths, but did not find the woman who supposedly had been held captive there. Police detected a powerful chemical smell, coming from a bedroom, similar to a smell one of the troopers had detected on a previous date at a mobile meth lab in Dorrance Township, Luzerne County.

A Savage 111 .270-caliber rifle, later found to be stolen, was leaning against one living room wall. Dennis Smith told police Larry Kitchell, no age or address listed, had brought the rifle there.

Franco told police he had come to the Smith residence to get high and that he’d been buying meth from them for several days prior to police’s visit. He said Dylan Smith had been cooking meth and disposing of paraphernalia by burning in the front yard.

Franco told police the supposedly captive woman had left the residence prior to police arriving and that five more guns from Kitchell were in Dennis Smith’s bedroom.

Dennis Smith told police he had been using heroin and meth and that marijuana, possibly along with some heroin and meth, were in his bedroom. He said Kitchell had brought five or six guns there a few days prior.

Smith told police he didn’t know the guns were stolen and that he had planned to go shooting with them later that day. Franco and the Smiths all showed signs of meth use and admitted to being heroin users as well.

At 4:09 p.m. that day, police executed a search warrant at the Smith residence, finding evidence of meth-making and three more guns. Some of the evidence was sent to a state police crime lab for analysis, after which an Aug. 23 lab report confirmed meth had been made at the residence.

As of Oct. 20, Franco had not been charged in this case and the Smiths had not been charged with unlawful restraint or rape.

Court records show a Larry L. Kitchell, 38, of Albrightsville, awaiting district court hearings in a December robbery case in Tunkhannock Township and a July drug case in Hamilton Township. It’s unknown if this man, who as of Oct. 20 was listed as being in Monroe County Correctional Facility in lieu of a total of $100,000 bail on both cases, is the same Kitchell who allegedly brought the stolen guns to the Smith residence.



Comments Off on Sheriff Ben Johnson: ‘Major’ Volusia County Methamphetamine ring dismantled – 20 women and men arrested

Nearly 20 men and women were arrested in the dismantling of “major meth ring,” and more arrests are expected following the culmination of a three-month investigation, egagg24rqrfgqewVolusia County Sheriff Ben Johnson said Thursday.

“This ring right here is dead,” said Johnson, who announced the arrests in a press conference that was streamed live on Facebook.

The suspects in the ring were selling multiple pounds of meth each month throughout the county, officials said. The drugs are believed to have made their way into the U.S. from Mexico.

“These individuals you see up here are responsible for bringing a lot of heartache, misery and even death to Volusia County,” Johnson said, referencing the board displaying photos of the suspects.

Volusia Bureau of Investigation agents built a case against the drug trafficking ring through interviews with confidential sources, hours of surveillance and several controlled drug buys, officials said.5gy3aqta535t

Investigators conducted surveillance on the group almost every day for the past two months, the sheriff said.

Ryan Prouse, 31, and Christopher Tsikuris, 32, were identified by investigators as the ringleaders of the “tight-knit” group, officials said. The men supplied meth to a network of lower-level dealers throughout the county, and in addition to having a local supplier, Tsikuris frequently made trips out-of-state to buy large amounts of the drug, which he brought back to Volusia County.

Tsikuris was released from prison in July of 2015 after serving a few years for possession of a controlled substance, possession/distribution of chemicals to manufacture a substance, fleeing/eluding law enforcement and driving with a revoked license, records show.

As of Thursday afternoon, 18 suspects had been arrested, but more arrests are forthcoming, officials said.

“The best thing to do, if they think they’re involved, go ahead and give us a call and save them the time from trying to hide from us,” Johnson said.

He said the county saw a decrease in one-pot labs this year, but he expects they’ll start popping back up now that a major supply ring is out of commission.

“Just because they can’t buy it from them doesn’t mean they’re going to stop using it,” Johnson said.

As the investigation neared its culmination, three members of the organization were picked up before Thursday. During their arrests last week, agents seized 4¼ ounces of crystal meth and 10 firearms.

  • Corey Dutler, 34, DeLand: Trafficking in methamphetamine, conspiracy to traffic in methamphetamine, delivery of methamphetamine, conspiracy to deliver hydromorphone, unlawful transportation of currency and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime
  • Jason McDowell, 41, Port Orange: Conspiracy to traffic in methamphetamine and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime
  • Ryan Prouse, 31, Port Orange: Trafficking in methamphetamine, conspiracy to traffic in methamphetamine and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime

Beginning at about 8 a.m. Thursday agents began rounding up the other suspects linked to the criminal organization. By 4 p.m., agents had arrested 15 more people, while the search for more suspects with open warrants was continuing:

  • Ryan Beaulieu, 39, Palm Coast: Solicitation to deliver methamphetamine and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime.
  • James Biggs, 37, New Smyrna Beach: Solicitation to deliver methamphetamine, solicitation to deliver hydromorphone and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime4wyyw4yhnsdrthd
  • Megan Cogswell, 30, Port Orange: Solicitation to deliver methamphetamine, unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime and child neglect
  • George Dickson, 37, Ormond Beach: Charges: Trafficking in methamphetamine and conspiracy to traffic in methamphetamine
  • Devon Fitzsimmons, 19, New Smyrna Beach: Solicitation to deliver methamphetamine and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime
  • Clinton Herb, 43 (DOB: 4/21/73), DeLand: Conspiracy to traffic in methamphetamine and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime
  • Andy Hicks, 37, Bunnell: Conspiracy to traffic in methamphetamine, solicitation to deliver hydromorphone and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime
  • Kristopher Hoskinson, 46, New Smyrna Beach: Solicitation to deliver methamphetamine, solicitation to deliver hydromorphone and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime.
  • James King, 40, New Smyrna Beach: Conspiracy to traffic in methamphetamine and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime.g3aq5tq5atat5
  • Joann Lendway, 52, Ormond Beach: Solicitation to deliver methamphetamine and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime
  • Paul Marchant, 28, New Smyrna Beach: Conspiracy to traffic in methamphetamine, unlawful transportation of currency and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime
  • Christopher Murray, 33, Daytona Beach: Solicitation to deliver methamphetamine, possession of methamphetamine and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime
  • Christopher Tsikuris, 32, Daytona Beach: Conspiracy to traffic in methamphetamine, delivery of methamphetamine and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime
  • Matthew Lewis, 29, Holly Hill:Conspiracy to deliver hydromorphone and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime
  • Martin Pell, 29, New Smyrna Beach: Solicitation to deliver methamphetamine, solicitation to deliver oxycodone and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime

On Friday, the Sheriff’s Office announced another arrest:

  • Patricia Linger,36, Ormond Beach: Conspiracy to deliver methamphetamine, conspiracy to deliver hydromorphone and unlawful use of a two-way communications device to facilitate the commission of a crime


Comments Off on Opinion: Treatment, not longer sentences, may be the answer [for Methamphetamine problem] – Johnson City Press

Six people from Kentucky were arrested by the Johnson City Police Department earlier this month on charges of promoting the production of methamphetamine after officers stopped their vehicle on the suspicion of theft from a local pharmacy. Police also discovered two of the defendants had pending meth production charges in their home state.

Press Senior Reporter Becky Campbell reported this week that arrests like that doesn’t necessarily mean meth manufacturing is on the rise, but the problem is still here and very real.

“There have been (meth) 10 labs this year that Washington County worked,” Washington County Sheriff’s Lt. Doug Gregg said. “That’s pretty close to last year.”

In Nashville, some state lawmakers have argued mandatory minimum sentencing is the only way to deal with defendants convicted of making or selling methamphetamine.

Current state law calculates the punishment for manufacturing, delivering or selling methamphetamine by the amount in a person’s possession.

We understand meth labs are still a problem in this state, but a mandatory minimum sentence is not the answer. Mandatory minimums haven’t worked for other drug crimes, and a mandatory minimum won’t work for meth.

It’s very costly to lock up nonviolent drug offenders for long periods of time. It’s certainly understandable that law-abiding citizens would prefer to see these individuals kept off the streets for as long as possible, but there is the reality that whatever the length of the sentence, these offenders will someday be released. Then what? Will they return to their old ways, or will they have reformed?

The latter is not likely to happen unless the offender has completed a sound, comprehensive drug treatment program. Battling addiction is a key component that is often missing in legislative efforts to reduce drug crimes.

The state would be better served by a thorough assessment of all current treatment programs and drug counseling options. Find out what is working, and put our limited state dollars into the ones that have shown success.



Comments Off on Six men executed Wednesday morning in Juarez – “related to disputes over small-scale drug dealing of crystal Methamphetamine and seizures of the drug”

Six men were executed, including five in a barbershop, in two separate incidents reported minutes apart Wednesday morning in another wave of violence that has hit Juárez, authorities said.

With these homicides, there have now been at least 62 slayings in October, with most of them being execution-style killings. That makes October one of the deadliest months in the past four years, according to reports.

The first of Wednesday’s fatal events happened at 10:14 a.m. when a man in his mid-30s was shot several times on José María Arteaga Street, near the intersection of Ramón Rayón Street, in the Barrio Alto neighborhood in downtown Juárez, the Chihuahua attorney general’s office said.

Agency spokesman Alejandro Ruvalcaba said the man died at the scene.

State investigators found seven 9 mm shells scattered around the victim’s body, he added.

A 12-year-old boy also was shot in the attack and taken to a hospital with at least one gunshot wound, Ruvalcaba said. Authorities didn’t know whether the boy was accompanying the slain man or was a bystander.

Ruvalcaba said that at about 10:59 a.m., the agency received a report of a shooting inside a barbershop on Zaragoza Boulevard near the Ciro Galeana Street in the Terrenos Nacionales neighborhood in south Juárez.

Inside the shop, officials found the bodies of five men who had been fatally shot, he said.

Ruvalcaba did not have any other details on the shooting because state investigators were still working at the scene. Juárez news media identified the barbershop as Poke’s and the victims as men between 25 and 35 years old.

The number of homicides had not been as high since May 2012, when 72 slayings were reported, according to reports from the Mesa de Seguridad y Justicia de Juárez, a civic organization that works with authorities on strategies to reduce violence.

Data show that from June 2012, when slayings dropped to 48, the number of monthly homicides began decreasing drastically to as low as 17 a month until last year.

In 2016, however, homicides increased sharply in July with 51 slayings after an average of 30 each month since the start of the year. In August and September there were 56 slayings each month, according to reports by the Chihuahua attorney general’s office.

The surge in execution-style deaths and shootings in broad daylight are related to disputes over small-scale drug dealing of crystal methamphetamine and seizures of the drug, Ruvalcaba said.

But the increased violence also coincides with political changes going on in Mexico, experts have said.

The Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, Mexico’s ruling party, was booted from power in Juárez and Chihuahua during June elections. Juárez elected independent Mayor Armando Cabada, while Chihuahua state Gov. Javier Corral of the National Action Party, or PAN, carried the state.  Cabada and Corral took office earlier in October.

Early this week Cabada met with representatives of the Mesa de Seguridad to talk about the increase in violent deaths in the city and strategies to reduce them.

Among the strategies is the return of mixed police units to patrol the city as they did during the most violent years in Juárez.

The units are made up of local, state and federal police. They began patrolling the city last weekend, Cabada said.