Friday, December 8, 2006

ONLINE EXTRA: Man arrested on drug charges in Deming
By Kevin Buey/For the Sun-News
Article Launched:12/08/2006 01:00:00 AM MST
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DEMING -- Luna County Sheriff's deputies and investigators, working in Gov. Bill Richardson's Operation Safe Border and in conjunction with the Border Operation Task Force Domestic Highway Interdiction Program, seized 162 individually wrapped packages of marijuana Thursday morning at a local residence.
Arrested at 10:30 a.m. was Jose Carlos Calixtro Lopez, 19, of Coahila, Mexico, at 312 Klondike Street. He was booked for possession with intent to distribute.
"He had 169.5 pounds of marijuana in his residence," LCSO Investigator Gary Leyba said of Lopez, an undocumented immigrant. "He had just removed it from a 1991 Honda Accord, which had crossed the border this morning."
The contraband has a street value of $136,000, Leyba said.
The Honda's glove compartment and dashboard were hollowed to conceal packages and the trunk altered to carry contraband.
"He admitted the marijuana came from Mexico," said Leyba, who called Klondike Street house a "Stash House," where the marijuana would have been stored until collected bysomeone else.

"He was turned over to the Border Operation Task Force for federal prosecution," Leyba said.
The arrest is part of an on-going investigation involving the area agencies.
"Through traffic stops," said Sheriff's Capt. Arturo Baeza, "we developed information which led to this arrest."
Kevin Buey writes for the Deming Headlight, a member of the Texas-New Mexico Newspapers Partnership, and can be reached at