A California sheriff’s deputy facing two felonies for allegedly having more than 100 pounds of fentanyl in his vehicle may have ties to a Mexican drug cartel.
Jorge Orseguera Rocha, 25, was charged Monday with one felony count each of possessing fentanyl for sale and transporting drugs.
The four-year law enforcement veteran is also suspected of possessing a loaded firearm during the crime, which could result in an even longer sentence.
Orseguera-Rocha has pleaded not guilty to all charges.
He is being held at the John Benoit Detention Center on $5 million bail after former colleagues at the Riverside County Sheriff’s Office said he was a flight risk due to possible ties to a Mexican drug cartel. . USA Today reported.
It is unclear what those connections are.
The Sheriff’s Office announced last week that it was investigating a drug ring, identifying one of its employees, Olseguera Rocha, as playing a key role in transporting drugs into the county.
Authorities launched an investigation into Mr. Orseguera Rocha’s actions and intercepted his phone calls.
It is unclear how long they had been watching Orseguera-Rocha or what evidence prompted the investigation.
But on September 16, agent Joshua Ricard learned that he was planning to travel to an “identified drug stash location” in Victorville, Calif., according to an affidavit obtained by USA Today. .
Investigators saw the man driving near Banning, about 130 miles east of Los Angeles, around 1 p.m., and spotted him again several hours later in San Bernardino County, according to the affidavit. .
By 3 p.m., Orseguera-Rocha arrived at her home in Victorville and called an unidentified family member, according to the affidavit.
He then allegedly went into the garage of his home.
Investigators say they followed him as he drove away.
A “drug detection and interdiction officer” eventually conducted the traffic stop, Ricard wrote in the affidavit, adding that a trained dog alerted authorities to the possible presence of drugs.
“In the trunk of the vehicle, deputies found four trash bags containing square trash bags. [packages] wrapped in clear cellophane,” the affidavit states.
“Further inspection of the packages revealed that all packages contained large amounts of blue M30 pills laced with fentanyl.”
The package weighed a total of 104 pounds and contained 520,000 pills, according to the affidavit.
Also sitting in the back seat was a loaded Glock belonging to Olseguera Rocha.
The newspaper has contacted his attorney, Randy Collins, for comment.
Deputies are now claiming that their former colleague, who resigned in the wake of the charges, knew what he was doing could have deadly consequences, but the congressman says he is “a former colleague who resigned in the wake of the charges.” He maintains that he did not smuggle “drugs” into the prison, and that he is not believed to have transported drugs while on duty. .
“Based on his employment with the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department, your associates know that Oseguera-Rocha is knowledgeable about the dangers of fentanyl and the mass overdose pandemic,” Ricard said in the affidavit. It has said.
“Your fiance estimates that the amount he had in his possession at the time of his arrest was enough to kill approximately 2 million people.”
Mr. Ricard also claimed that the funds used by Mr. Orseguera-Rocha to pay his bail may have come from a criminal organization.
Orseguera Rocha is scheduled to return to court on October 31, when the judge will reconsider his bail.