FBI agents led a multi-agency task force in a raid of a Paso Robles motel on Wednesday in order to thwart a drug ring that spans to what authorities believe to a Mexican drug cartel.
According to announcements made by FBI Agent Bill Lewis of the Los Angeles field office, and US attorney Andre Birotte Jr. at a press conference in Paso Robles after the raid, this drug ring has been under investigation and observation for about one year.
According to the FBI, agents discovered ties by local members from gangs, such as Paso Trece (Paso 13), Mexican Pride, Underground Pride, and Wicked-Minded Sureños, to drug traffickers from Mexico where the methamphetamine is believed to have been manufactured.
Wednesday’s raid netted law enforcement officials with 16 arrests with charges ranging from distributing and manufacturing meth. Some of the charges will be federal for some defendants.
Additionally, investigators say money and drugs were seized with a street value of about $100,000.
The arrests of Paso Robles residents included were Leobardo Aburto, 34, Angelica Aguilar, 36, Anna Aldaco, 34, Juan Becerra, 37, Samuel Cerna, 34, Gary Davis, 45, Leanne Ferravanti, 52, Brandon Fletcher, 28, Emiterio Guerrero, 28, Miguel Hernandez, 32, Edward David Merino, 50, Daniel Montes, 37, Delores Prieto, 54, Edgar Paul Alvarez-Rendon, 24, Gabriel Rendon, 38, , Amelia Rosales, 34, and Miguel Torres, 26.
Also arrested were Edwin Rodriguez, 29, of San Diego and Jesus Telesforo Rodriguez, 23. Another unnamed defendant was arrested, whose identity is being withheld due to what investigators are calling “operational reasons.”
Authorities say Jesus Alejandro Alcaraz-Martinez, 24, of Atascadero, Melanie Wilson, 39, and Edgar Paul Alvarez-Rendon, 24, both of Paso Robles, are considered fugitives and are being sought.
Cal Coast News: Paso Robles Gang Members Arrested in Statewide Drug Sweep