Aug 14, 2013 11:56 AM
Although Glenn County’s Interagency Narcotics Task Force (GLINTF) has made three arrests and confiscated nearly $4 million dollars of cocaine on Interstate 5 in Glenn County within the first two weeks of August, there is little evidence to support the two are connected.
“At this time there is nothing that suggests the arrests are related, pending a full investigation,” said Lt. Sean Arlyn, the task force’s commander. “We know the drugs are routinely coming through here, catching them has been hit or miss.”
On August 1, the task force arrested 27 year old Andres Guzman of Lancaster, Calif., on the northbound I-5 just north of Orland for possession of 30 kilos of cocaine, an estimated street value of $3 million dollars. Guzman was detained by the Glenn County Sheriff’s Department until he was taken into federal custody August 5.
On August 10, CHP conducted another traffic stop on a vehicle again on northbound I-5, this time just north of Willows. After a subsequent search, officers located 9 kilograms of cocaine in a hidden compartment, an estimated street value of $900,000. Both 25-year-old Isirdo Martinez-Olmos of Portland, Ore., And 36 year-old Jose Hernandez-Ruiz of Vancouver, Wash., were booked into the Glenn County Jail. Arlyn states they still have custody of the two men but has been in contact with the DEA to hand them over in order to face harsher sentences.
Despite the arrests of large amounts of cocaine on essentially the same stretch of highway within Glenn County, Arlyn indicated the drugs did not carry the same trademarks.
“The packaging of the two sets of drugs were not the same, which is usually a branding technique by cartels,” said Arlyn. “The drugs found on August 1 didn’t have any ‘stickers’ on them, unlike the drugs we confiscated on August 10.”
Arlyn also indicated the two men have a hold on them by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for illegally entering the country from Mexico. Neither GLINTF nor the Glenn County Sheriff’s Department could confirm any prior criminal record for Martinez-Olmos or Hernandez-Ruiz.
“It is likely these men had knowledge of people within the organization prior to delivery,” said Arlyn. “Typically these guys get hired to run drugs from the border up through our state into the greater Portland and Vancouver areas.”
Arlyn indicated despite the two arrests, the task force’s focus will largely remain on the white dope distributed within the county since highway arrests have historically been “hit or miss.”