L.A. County sheriff's deputies seize 1,500 pounds of illegal fireworks

Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department investigators seized about 1,500 pounds of illegal fireworks in East Los Angeles and arrested two men on suspicion of illegal possession of explosives, a felony.

Joseph Valencia, 46, and Daniel Guerrero, 44, also were cited for possession of dangerous fireworks without a permit, which is a misdemeanor, authorities said.

Both men were released on their own recognizance.

Sheriff’s deputies were patrolling in the 5200 block of Repetto Street on Thursday when they saw Valencia selling fireworks to another man from a parked vehicle, Sgt. Andrew Cruz said.

During a search of Valencia’s nearby residence, deputies discovered the illegal fireworks -- including 49 explosive M-80s, Cruz said.

M-80s are capped at both end with plaster of Paris heads that, when detonated, become projectiles moving at speeds of up to 50 mph.

The confiscated fireworks were taken to a local fire station and the M-80s were turned over to the sheriff’s arson and explosives experts for disposal, Cruz said.

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