A Westchester man is one of several people who have been arrested for the alleged involvement in the distribution of cocaine and methamphetamine in Los Angeles and Hawaii, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) officials said.
The arrests were made Monday and Tuesday, February 20th and 21st, in a multi-agency operation code-named “Russian Ice,” which resulted in the seizure of quantities of methamphetamine, cocaine, marijuana, weapons and cash, FBI officials said.
The operation was conducted by agents with the FBI and the Bureau of Immigration Customs Enforcement, as well as officers from the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), the Santa Monica Police Department and deputies with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
Approximately 100 agents and officers took part in the two-day operation.
According to federal criminal complaints filed in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, the defendants have been charged with violations ranging from conspiracy to distribute cocaine and methamphetamine including pound-level crystal methamphetamine, also known as “ice,” as well as a firearms violation.
In addition, one state and seven federal search warrants were executed in connection with the operation.
Jesse Edmundo Castillo, 35, of Westchester — one of several suspects arrested in the operation — has been charged with conspiracy to possess and distribute cocaine, FBI officials said.
Authorities are also looking for Michael Montoya, 31, of Marina del Rey, who is one of two men charged in the complaints with conspiracy to distribute narcotics, FBI officials said.
The majority of the defendants were afforded an initial appearance in the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles Tuesday, February 21st. Some face a maximum sentence of 40 years in prison if convicted.
The case will be prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s office in the Central District of California.