The arrests of two suspected heroin dealers led undercover Modesto police officers to 11 other people trying to buy the drug, according to a department spokesman.
Sgt. Brian Findlen said officers from the Modesto police Narcotics Enforcement Team and the Street Crimes Unit made the 13 arrests on Saturday. They were the product of a heroin sales investigation that started the previous weekend when Modesto police arrested 12 people in connection with heroin deals.
The first operation also started with the arrests of two men suspected of selling heroin to undercover officers. Police then made 10 additional arrests after arranging sales with people who called the suspected dealers' cell phones, Findlen said.
Police released fewer details about last weekend's undercover operation, citing a need to ensure the safety of the undercover officers.
Findlen would not say if the latest suspects also contacted police through cell phone contacts.
In both undercover operations, police sold the suspects fake heroin. They used Tootsie Roll candy, because it looks similar to the drug, Findlen said.
About 2 p.m. on Saturday, police arrested Hector Medina, 23, and Victor Quevedo, 24, both of Mexico on suspicion of possession of heroin for the purpose of sale, transportation of heroin and conspiracy to commit a crime.
Police arrested Medina and Quevedo near the intersection of Seventh and I streets and said they are suspected of selling heroin in the downtown Modesto area. In a sting operation in Modesto and Ceres during several ensuing hours, investigators made the additional 11 arrests.
The following people were arrested on suspicion of attempted possession of heroin:
- Marcus Lopez, 41, of Modesto
Bee staff writer Rosalio Ahumada can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 578-2394.