Two Arrested on Drug Counts; $95,577 Cash Seized at Home
Two San Clemente men have been arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to distribute cocaine, and $95,577 cash has been seized from their home, authorities said Thursday.
However, no drugs were found in the possession of the suspects, both Colombian citizens, nor were any found during searches of their residence, San Clemente Police Lt. Al Ehlow said.
Arrested at Lindbergh Field in San Diego at 8 p.m. Tuesday were Juan David Ospina, 25, and his brother Victor Manuel Ospina, 36, who live together in the 100 block of Avenida Mesita, Ehlow said Thursday. A third man was detained but later released, he said.
The arrests ended a monthlong investigation by officers of the San Clemente Police and Orange County Sheriff’s departments, authorities said.
Search warrants were served at two houses on Avenida Mesita, Ehlow said, one of them the home of the brothers and their families, and the other the home of the man who was released. He said the cash, two handguns and a Honda Accord were seized.
It was the second time the two agencies have conducted a joint investigation in a south Orange County case, Ehlow said.
On Oct. 16, two men and a woman were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to distribute cocaine. A total of $475,000 cash was seized from their homes.
In that case, Raul Galvis of Laguna Hills, Marilyn Jeanne Price of Laguna Niguel and Juan Pablo Gonzales of Mission Viejo, all 29, were taken into custody at their residences and booked into Orange County Jail, Ehlow said.
No drugs were located in either investigation, he said, “but signs of their past existence were found.”
“The (narcotics-sniffing) dogs (reacted to) a couple of boxes that had powdery residue in them. But we didn’t find drugs,” Ehlow said.
Both Men Out on Bail
In this week’s case, the Ospina brothers were transported from San Diego to the San Clemente City Jail, where they were booked and bail was set at $25,000 each. By 3 a.m. Wednesday, both men were out on bail, Ehlow said.
“Someone came in here and gave us $50,000 cash for both of them to get them out,” he said.
Both brothers, who identified themselves as “businessmen” on their arrest reports, were scheduled to appear for arraignment Nov. 26 in South Orange County Municipal Court.