Simi Valley Cops Shut Down $6M Heroin Pipeline
Following the arrest of three suspects and seizure of over five pounds of heroin, authorities in Simi Valley are now saying they have successfully shout down a drug pipeline that was supplying their city.Wednesday's arrests came after a six-month investigation, according to the Ventura County Star, and took place in Sylmar and Arleta.
Taken into custody were Jose Alfredo Carillo-Flores, 23, of North Hollywood; Joseph Ramirez Ortiz, 19, of North Hollywood; and Jose Medina Zepeda, 39, of Sylmar. All three men are likely to face drug-related charges.
The heroin trafficking operation was based in Los Angeles County, but a portion of the drugs were being moved into Simi, where there has been a recent uptick in heroin use by local youth.
"Four people in their 20s and two in their 40s died of heroin overdoses in the city last year, police said. At least two more — children of Simi Valley residents — suffered heroin-related deaths this year in other cities," notes the Star.
The heroin seized as part of the arrests has an estimated street value of about $300,000, though police say the overall drug operation was worth much more: "At the rate that this illegal narcotics distribution network was supplying heroin to drug users, it is estimated that this criminal enterprise could have made approximately six million dollars in one year," note the SVPD in a news release.
$120,000 in cash, presumably from heroin sales, was also seized. The heroin and cash were displayed by Simi Valley police today at a press conference, where authorities say the drugs now in their possession "were enough to supply 192 people for a year."