Three members of a suspected Mexican drug trafficking ring were jailed in lieu of $1 million bail after they allegedly delivered 50 pounds of methamphetamine—some of it stored in a cereal box—to an undercover task force officer in Murrieta, police said.
The arrests on Friday, Jan. 10, were the result of an infiltration of the Hemet-based trafficking organization, Murrieta police Lt. Tony Conrad said in a news release Thursday.
After a day-long operation that took place in a commercial area of Murrieta, the three suspects arrested were: Donaciano Ramirez-Guerra, 36; Jovanny Aguirre, 22; and Jorge Hugo Guzman, 26.
The seized meth had an estimated street value of $5 million, according to Conrad.
A photo taken by Murrieta police showed the packages of drugs were hidden inside cardboard boxes, including a blue Frosted Flakes box.
As of Thursday, Ramirez-Guerra, Aguirre and Guzman remained behind bars at Southwest Detention Center on suspicion of conspiracy to commit a felony, transportation of methamphetamine and possession of methamphetamine for sales purposes. They were tentatively due in court Feb. 19, jail records showed.
Conrad said the take-down was a collaboration between Murrieta officers and the California Department of Justice Inland Allied Task Force—INCA—to which one Murrieta detective is assigned full-time.
The Inland Crackdown Allied Task Force was described as a multi-agency task force with participation by federal, state and local agencies targeting major Colombian and Mexican drug cartels within the Inland Empire region of the Los Angeles High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area.
“Our detectives did assist with this operation,” Conrad said.
“This seizure represents the significant achievements that can be obtained when local, state and federal law enforcement partners work together to keep our communities drug free.”