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17 Arrested, Cocaine, Meth and Weapons Confiscated

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SACRAMENTO, CA- The Sacramento Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Safe Streets Task Force (SSTF) recently served 17 arrest warrants and 11 search warrants during law enforcement activities in the Sacramento area. The arrests and searches are the culmination of a nearly two-year investigation to identify a network of gang members engaged in the trafficking of methamphetamine and firearms.

The SSTF focuses its investigative efforts on violent gangs in the Sacramento area and does so using a multi-jurisdictional approach. The task force includes officers, agents, and detectives from the following agencies: Federal Bureau of Investigation; Sacramento Police Department; California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation: California Parole Apprehension Team and Office of Correctional Safety, Special Services Unit; and California Highway Patrol.

Other agencies that played a pivotal role in the success of this investigation include the National Gang Intelligence Center, U.S. Bureau of Prisons, the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department, and U.S. Federal Probation.

"Partnership is essential to the success of investigations, and we thank our law enforcement partners for their efforts during this operation that culminated in today's takedown," said Herbert M. Brown, Special Agent in Charge of the Sacramento Division of the FBI. "Removing dangerous drugs and violent criminals from our neighborhoods is essential to ensure a bright future for our families. Takedowns such as these demonstrate that the FBI and its task force partners are committed to disrupting violent gang activity and improving the quality of life in our communities."

Using a variety of investigative techniques and resources, the SSTF identified alleged drug traffickers with membership and/or ties to the Nuestra Familia prison gang. Some of the individuals have extensive criminal histories that include armed robbery, assault, and drug distribution.

Many of the individuals arrested today are known gang members, and all have been arrested for conspiring to distribute methamphetamine and/or weapons charges:

  • Vidal Dominic Fablela, aka "Spider,", 45
  • Zubulen Cole Hughes, aka "Zeb,", 20
  • Alberto Miranda, aka "Chingy,", 29
  • Angelo Lorenzo Gonzales, aka "Lo," 27
  • Mario Hernandez Garcia, aka "Chic," 35
  • Jaime Ysidro Sturgis, aka "Hollywood," 37
  • Rudolph Edward Jimenez, aka "Pooh Bear," 26
  • Jose Andre Jaramillo, aka "Dre," 35
  • Alvaro Herrera, aka "Tuffy," 29
  • Arthur Albert Morales, aka "Art," 32
  • Cilvino Dejesus Hernandez, aka "Geto," 31
  • Juan Carlos Palacios Venegas, aka "Chayito," 42
  • Rusty Allen Rycraft, aka "Rusty," 22
  • Jesse Anthony Montanez, aka "Papas," 24
  • Ramon Jose Levario, aka "Kiko," 30
  • Sonny Melvin Gonzales, aka "Sonny G," 23
  • Zachary Kurtz, aka "Zach," 21

Information about specific charges will be made available when the individuals are indicted. An additional six individuals were also arrested on state and local charges.

The operation successfully seized drugs, cash, and vehicles as a result of the operation, estimated as follows:

  • Significant quantities of methamphetamine (approximately 25 pounds) and marijuana (approximately 40 pounds)
  • Cocaine, heroin, and Oxycontin
  • Approximately $35,000 in cash
  • Approximately 12 cars, including luxury brands such as Lexus and Cadillac Approximately 30 weapons and assorted ammunition

The allegations are only accusations and all persons are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

The national FBI Safe Streets Violent Crime Initiative began in January 1992 and was designed to enable each field office to address violent street gangs and drug-related violence through the establishment of FBI-sponsored, long-term, proactive task forces focusing on violent gangs, crimes of violence, and the apprehension of violent fugitives.