LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICIALS TAKE DOWN INTERNATIONAL
HEROIN DISTRIBUTION ORGANIZATION
During a Press Conference held Tuesday (March 24, 2009) at the Sherman Block Sheriff’s Headquarters Building in Monterey Park, Sheriff Lee Baca announced that an International Heroin Distribution Organization was no longer in business.
This morning, arrest and search warrants were served at thirty-eight locations in regards to the investigation into the Mendoza family’s heroin distribution. Forty-eight arrests for Conspiracy to Distribute Narcotics were made along with the seizure of fifteen kilograms of heroin (street value $1.8 million), $100,000 in cash, five vehicles, two guns and 14 children that were taken into protective custody. Additionally, forty arrests and the seizure of five kilograms of heroin were made during the course of the investigation.
Sheriff Baca said that on average, “fifteen to twenty kilograms of heroin were being sold per week, yielding an estimated two million dollars in profits a month.” The heroin was transported from Mexico and distributed by numerous gangs throughout East Los Angeles and surrounding areas, including Ventura and San Diego counties.
“The relationship between drugs and street gangs isn’t new to the DEA. Street gangs continue to fund their operations through the illicit drug market – in this case, preying on those vulnerable in our communities through the sale of heroin on the streets of Los Angeles,” said Timothy J. Landrum, Special Agent in Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration. “Those arrested today were responsible for bringing more than 150,000 doses of heroin onto the streets of Los Angeles every week - enough heroin to supply thousands of people, with a street value of more than half a million dollars. DEA will continue to work with our law enforcement partners, working together to rid our neighborhoods of violent drug traffickers and street gangs.”
"I commend this tenacious law enforcement team made up of the Sheriff
Department's Narcotics Bureau; and the U.S. Attorney's Office, Drug Enforcement Administration and Immigration and Customs Enforcement for their courageous work in stopping an international operation from distributing Heroin in our local communities," said Los Angeles County Supervisor Gloria Molina.
SHB-A-09 X X X March 24, 2009