Glendale police seized $4.5 million in marijuana and methamphetamine after busting a large-scale narcotics distribution organization in the Los Angeles region, officials said on Tuesday.
More than 3,500 pounds of marijuana and one pound of methamphetamine were recovered Friday from two homes in Norwalk and a storage facility in Pico Rivera. Glendale police declined to say exactly what sparked the investigation.
“Drugs have no geographic boundaries,” Glendale Police Sgt. Tom Lorenz said. “That’s why we’ll go just about everywhere.”
Glendale narcotics detectives, agents from the U.S. Department of Drug Enforcement Administration and investigators of Los Angeles Interagency Metropolitan Police Apprehension Crime Task Force — also known as L.A. IMPACT — arrested seven people connected with the organization.
They included: Oscar Sanchez, 37, and Guillermo Perez Sanchez, 52 — both of Norwalk — Javier Francisco Avila, 29, of Ontario; Luis Alberto Valdivia, 32, San Luis Obispo; Jetsey Wlises Gaytan, 28, of Perris; Benito Vasquez Lopez, 39, of Anaheim; and Jorge Luis Campos, 38, of Altadena.
Their roles in the organization ranged from distribution and transportation, to protection of the drugs, Lorenz said. No money was found during the takedown.
Glendale police released few details about the months-long investigation, which was initiated after narcotics detectives received information that eventually led to them to identify the organization, Lorenz said.
Police will continue their investigation into the organization and will particularly trail any leads tied to the methamphetamine seizure, Lorenz said.
While most of the men bonded out of the Glendale police jail, Vasquez Lopez, Perez Sanchez and Gaytan were remanded into the custody of the U.S. Department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Lorenz said.
The men are expected to appear Aug. 29 in a Los Angeles County Superior Courtroom.