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Local News in Brief : Countywide : $17 Million in Drugs Seized in 3 Raids

County and federal narcotics agents seized 176 pounds of cocaine valued at $17 million and arrested five people Tuesday in three early morning raids.

The arrests culminated a 10-week investigation of the five suspects, who are believed to be part of a drug wholesaling operation that distributes cocaine to street dealers throughout the county, said Anaheim Police Sgt. Jon Beteag, a member of the regional anti-drug task force.

The task force includes Orange County law enforcement agencies, as well as state and federal officials.

Beteag said officers also seized about $20,000 in cash, along with ledgers containing coded records of the ring’s transactions.

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Three people--John Restrepo Acevedo, 20, his brother, Leonel Restrepo Acevedo, 23, and the Leonel Restrepo’s wife, Marina Luz, 23--were arrested at a house on Otter River Circle in Fountain Valley, where the cocaine was found, Beteag said.

Authorities arrested Gilardo Munera Ochoa, 21, at the Elkwood Garden Apartments on Bayport Street in Garden Grove where they seized the cash. The fifth person, Fernando Restrepo Moncada, 40, was arrested at a house in Irvine where the ledgers were found. All five suspects were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to transport drugs.

Beteag said the raids were made simultaneously at 2:30 a.m. Tuesday, as soon as officers got search warrants.

Each suspect is being held in the Orange County Jail in lieu of $1 million bail.

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