Massive Meth Bust Went Down in California County
On August 20, 2020, Santa Barbara County, California witnessed its largest drug bust in history.
Sheriff’s deputies intercepted a panga boat loaded with over a ton and a half of methamphetamine at a beach in the South Coast.
This encounter resulted in the arrest of 33 individuals suspected to be involved in the smuggling operation.
The boat seized came from Mexico and carried more than 3,100 pounds of methamphetamine. Some allege that this bust may be the largest in the country.
The Santa Maria Times highlighted some of the agencies involved:
Agencies involved in the investigation and seizure included the Santa Barbara County Special Investigations Bureau, K-9 units and air support; the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office; U.S. Customs and Border Protection; Homeland Security, FBI; U.S. Coast Guard; California State Parks police; and the California Highway Patrol K-9 and Coastal Division Air Operations.
“Drug cartels, smugglers and illicit narcotics dealers know no international, state or local boundaries,” Sheriff Bill Brown declared. “We will never know how many lives were saved from overdose or addictive misery as a result of this exceptional law enforcement action.”
Those arrested included 29 men, one adult female, and three juveniles. The 30 adults were arrested on the suspicion of felony conspiracy and transportation of narcotics for sale.
According to The Santa Maria Times, the people arrested included:
Antonia Gonzalez, 33, of Riverside; Juan Alvarez, 43, of Pomona; Jesse Padilla, 30, of Whittier; Noe Ortega, 37, of Jurupa Valley; Santigo Carrillo-Galvan, 53, of Goleta; Joel Barrios, 50, of Bell; Enrique Transito-Alejo, 58, of Goleta; Adolfo Ortega, 72, of Mira Loma; Mario Saenz-Avila, 35, of Goleta; Enrique Ortega, 25, of Mira Loma; Saul Loza, 29, of Goleta; Gabriel Moren-Sepulveda, 31, of Santa Barbara; Rogelio Valles-Vasquez, 61, of Santa Barbara; Israel Sosa, 38, of Goleta; Indargo Franco-Gonzalez, 51, of Moreno Valley; Felix Mojardin, 25, of Goleta; Rodolfo Martinez, 59, of Santa Barbara; Oswaldo Lopez-Felix, 37, of Goleta; Salomon Arzate-Garcia, 43, of Riverside; Vicente Guevara-Valencia, 58, of Mira Loma; Henry Ayala, 62, of Whittier; Brian Armendariz, 26, of Santa Barbara; Mariano Joanico, 35, of Goleta; Pedro Zavala-Luna, 41, of Santa Barbara; Ernesto Pacheco, 32, of Los Angeles; Richardo Desales, 51, of Anaheim; Luis Rodriguez-Galvez, 44, of Whittier; Alexis Martinez, 24, of Santa Barbara; Fernando Arroyo, 42, Moreno Valley; and Humberto Franco-Gonzalez, 54, of Santa Barbara.
Two of the suspects made an attempt to flee and were successfully tracked down by the sheriff’s K-9 units, according to Sheriff’s deputies spokeswoman Raquel Zick.
The case is set to be prosecuted by the Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s Office following its review by the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
It goes without saying that it’s probably time that the U.S. start bringing back thousands of troop home and re-purposing them towards matters of border security and coastal. In an open borders America, more drug busts like these will occur, and these situations could potentially get even worse.
America must get its defense priorities straight.