Home San Diego Press Releases 2013 Five Men Arrested on Federal Drug and Firearms Charges

Five Men Arrested on Federal Drug and Firearms Charges

FBI San Diego August 15, 2013
  • Darrell Foxworth (858) 320-8302

EL CENTRO, CA—FBI Special Agent in Charge Daphne Hearn announces the arrest of five Imperial County men on federal drug and firearms charges. The defendants were arrested pursuant to federal arrest warrants based upon four separate complaints charging the defendants with federal drug and firearms violations.

The arrests were made on Tuesday, August 13, 2013, during a multi-agency law enforcement operation in El Centro, California. Agents and officers from federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies participated in the execution of two search warrants and five arrests.

The arrests were the result of a year-long investigation into drug and illegal firearms activities by the defendants in this case. The multi-agency investigation involved the purchase of more than 20 firearms and the seizure of approximately one pound of methamphetamine. The following individuals were arrested.

NameCharges
Anthony Bustamante
Case # 13MJ8655
Title 21, United States Code (U.S.C.), Sections 841(a)(1) and 846–conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance, and Title 21, U.S.C., Sections 841(a)(1)-distribution of a controlled substance
Jose Villanueva
Case # 13MJ8655
Title 21, United States Code (U.S.C.), Sections 841(a)(1) and 846–conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance, and Title 21, U.S.C., Sections 841(a)(1)-distribution of a controlled substance
Raul Esparza
Case # 13MJ8654
Title 18, U.S.C., Sections 922(g)(1)-felon in possession of a firearm (felony)
Hernan Mendez
Case # 13MJ8656
Title 18, U.S.C. Sections 922 (g) (1)-felon in possession of a firearm (felony), Title 26, U.S.C. Sections 5845-possession of an unregistered firearm (felony)
Carlos Mendivil
Case # 13MJ8651
Title 21, U.S.C. Sections 841(a)(1) and 846-conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance, Title 21, U.S.C. Sections 841(a)(1)-distribution of a controlled substance, Title 18, United States Code, Sections 922(g)(1)-felon in possession of a firearm (felony)


Following their arrests all of the defendants were booked into the Imperial County Jail. The defendants had their initial appearances before a U.S. Magistrate Judge on Wednesday, August 14, 2013, before a U.S. Magistrate Judge. The next scheduled court date is Monday, August 19, 2013. This case is being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Southern District of California.

Investigating Agencies

U.S. Customs and Border Protection
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)

A complaint itself is not evidence that the defendants committed the crimes charged. The defendants are presumed innocent until the government meets its burden in court of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.