Six Arrested for Trafficking Methamphetamine and Heroin in Bakersfield
FRESNO, Calif. — Six people were arrested in Kern County today following a year-long investigation of a Bakersfield-based drug trafficking organization that distributed methamphetamine and heroin.
The defendants are scheduled to make an initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Sheila K. Oberto on Wednesday, April 27, at 2:00 p.m.
Those charged in the federal criminal complaint unsealed today are: Jorge Calderon-Campos, 41; Byron Adilio Alfaro-Sandoval, 45; and Johnathan Benjamin Torres, 30; all citizens of Mexico residing in Bakersfield; Jose Angel Beltran-Chaidez, 66, of Bakersfield; and Alberto Gomez-Santiago, 36; and Mark Garcia, 22, of Arvin.
According to court documents, Campos distributed in Bakersfield large amounts of methamphetamine and heroin that he imported from Mexico. Between March 2021 and February 2022, law enforcement agencies intercepted and seized approximately 86 pounds of methamphetamine and 1 kilogram of heroin that Campos and his co-conspirators attempted to distribute.
“We are committed to disrupting transnational criminal networks that flood our communities with dangerous drugs,” said U.S. Attorney Talbert. “Those who distribute large amounts of methamphetamine, heroin, and other illegal drugs in our communities will be held accountable.”
“The successful outcome of this yearlong investigation further highlights the importance of sustained cooperation between local, state and federal law enforcement,” said HSI San Francisco/NorCal Special Agent in Charge Tatum King. “Through this multiagency effort, we were able to disrupt transnational criminal activity responsible for importing and distributing large amounts of methamphetamine and heroin into our communities. We especially thank our agents, the men and women of our federal and local partners as well as the prosecutorial efforts by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of California.”
“DEA and our law enforcement partners will be relentless in the pursuit of criminal networks that set-up shop in our communities and push poison into our neighborhoods,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Wade R. Shannon.
This case is the product of an investigation by Homeland Security Investigations, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Kern County Sheriff’s Office, the Kern County High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Office of Inspector General, the U.S. Marshals Service, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the Bureau of Land Management, the Bakersfield Police Department, the Kern County Probation Department, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, the U.S. Secret Service, and the California Highway Patrol. Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher D. Baker is prosecuting the case.
If convicted of the charged offenses, each defendant faces a statutory mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years in prison up to a maximum of life in prison, and a $10 million fine. Any sentence, however, would be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables. The charges are only allegations; the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at www.justice.gov/OCDETF.