Stanislaus County drug agents seize 290 pounds of meth in Ceres bust

local@modbee.comMay 7, 2013 

UPDATE:

CERES -- Investigators said Wednesday they believe a massive methamphetamine seizure at a Ceres home will put a dent in the area’s drug trade.

On Tuesday, officers arrested Victor Ramiro Torres, 23, of Ceres and Luis Bartolo Madriz Sandavol, 32, of Everett, Wash., near a Ceres home where they found 290 pounds of meth and $66,000 in cash. The two were booked at the Stanislaus County Jail on felony charges of possession of methamphetamine for sale and transportation of methamphetamine.

Modesto Police Sgt. Brian Findlen said the arrests, the result of an investigation following an anonymous tip, will have a major impact.

“It’s clear these are large-scale drug dealers,” Findlen said. “We’re certain it’s going to disturb if not cripple the distribution of meth in this area in the short term and hopefully in the long term.”

Agents with the Stanislaus Drug Enforcement Agency, the Modesto Narcotics Enforcement Team and Homeland Security Investigations served a search warrant at a home on Hardy Court in Ceres Tuesday afternoon.

Agents with the the SDEA reported that this is the largest methamphetamine seizure in its 40-year existence, Findlen said. He said the investigation is continuing, and more arrests could lie ahead.

“We are following up on the origin of this large amount of methamphetamine,” he said. The going price for meth is $9,000 per pound, making the 290 pounds confiscated Tuesday worth roughly $2.6 million.

Local drug agents say they have made the biggest bust anyone can remember, seizing 290 pounds of methamphetamine Tuesday along with $66,000 in cash. Two men were arrested.

According to the Modesto Police Department, agents with the Stanislaus Drug Enforcement Agency, the Modesto Narcotics Enforcement Team and Homeland Security Investigations served a search warrant at a home on Hardy Court in Ceres after receiving an anonymous tip.

During the search of the residence Tuesday afternoon, agents located the meth in several storage containers.

Officers arrested Victor Ramiro Torres, 23, of Ceres and Luis Bartolo Madriz Sandavol, 32, of Everett, Wash., near the home. They were booked at the Stanislaus County Jail on felony charges of possession of methamphetamine for sale and transportation of methamphetamine.

"Agents with the respective law enforcement agencies believe the drug seizure will create a noticeable disruption to the availability of this dangerous drug in our community," Modesto police Sgt. Brian Findlen wrote in a news release. "The investigation is ongoing, and additional arrests are possible."

The lead agency in the investigation, the SDEA, reported that this is the largest methamphetamine seizure in its 40-year existence, Findlen said.

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