Federal Indictment Unsealed in Wiretap Case
|U.S. Attorney’s Office September 16, 2009|
BAKERSFIELD, CA—United States Attorney Lawrence G. Brown announced today that a federal grand jury returned an indictment on September 10, 2009, charging father and son ARMANDO MEZA, 30 of Bakersfield, and PORFIRIO MEZA, 72 of Tehachapi, and GARETH HYLLA 32, of California City for conspiring to distribute, and possess with the intent to distribute, methamphetamine. The indictment was unsealed today in connection with a series of arrests and search warrants executed in Tehachapi, Bakersfield, and California City.
This case is the product of an extensive investigation by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Federal Bureau of Investigation working with numerous state and local law enforcement agencies. These include the following:
Arvin Police Department
Bakersfield Police Department
California City Police Department
California Department of Corrections
California State Parole
Delano Police Department
Kern County District Attorney’s Office
Kern County Probation Department
Kern County Sheriff’s Office
Ridgecrest Police Department
Shafter Police Department
Stallion Springs Police Department
Tehachapi Police Department
The investigation involved a federal wiretap and search warrants. Over 30 individuals were arrested today on state drug charges.
If convicted of the charges, the federal defendants face a possible life sentence. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables and any applicable statutory sentencing factors.
The charges are only allegations and all the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.