Suspected drug lab shut down following police raid, four held

March 12, 2001|By DARREN SIMON, Staff Writer

WESTMORLAND — The Imperial County Narcotic Task Force, the California Highway Patrol and San Diego narcotics officers shut down a suspected drug lab near this city Sunday and netted three arrests.

In the early-morning hours law enforcement teams executed a search warrant on a trailer at 5980 Poe Road. They discovered a lab apparently used for the manufacture of methamphetamine.

According to an NTF press release, officers smelled chemicals in the trailer and found chemicals heating on a stove.

Agents arrested Eleazar Duarte, 36, of Desert Shores, Pedro Gutierrez, 48, of Westmorland and Sergio Flores, 24, of Desert Shores on suspicion of manufacturing methamphetamine and possession of chemicals for drug manufacturing.

A woman, a 17-year-old and three children were found at the scene. The teen and the children were taken into protective custody. The woman was released.


In another drug-related arrest Sunday, the Highway Patrol made a traffic stop in the area. Officers smelled chemicals in the car and conducted a search.

Officers reportedly found 10 gallons of suspected methamphetamine in solution.

The driver, Luis Chavez, 21, of Thermal was arrested on suspicion of possession of chemicals for the manufacturing of a drug.

All those arrested remained in county jail this morning. Information on their bail was not available.

Staff Writer Darren Simon can be reached at 337-4082.

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