Feds charge 13 members of Nipomo narcotics trafficking family

April 7, 2015

Agents with the FBI, California Highway Patrol officers and San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s deputies conducted a pre-dawn operation that led to the arrest of 12 members of a Central Coast narcotics trafficking organization. Officers are still searching for one member of the group, Victor Speedy Gonzales.

The indictment targets the alleged drug trafficking activities of the Rocha family, which operated in and around Nipomo and Santa Maria. Eleven of the defendants named in the indictment are charged with conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, namely high purity methamphetamine; cocaine; and heroin.

The conspiracy count in the indictment details 74 “overt acts” that began in the winter of 2013 and continued into 2014. The overt acts include numerous narcotics transactions; drug negotiations using coded language, and “controlled buys” between the defendants and two confidential informants.

As alleged in the indictment, Jose Alfredo Rocha; his wife, Irene; and their sons, Tony Perfecto Rocha and Jose Alfredo Rocha Jr., allegedly acquired and stored drugs for sale and distribution to area drug dealers, who would then sell narcotics to street-level customers.

Six of the defendants are additionally charged with distribution or possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and heroin. Defendants Jose Alfredo Rocha and Tony Perfecto Rocha are also charged with distribution of methamphetamine near a school, and defendant Maria Ynez Flores is charged with the use of a telephone to facilitate drug trafficking.

In addition to the sale of controlled substances, the indictment alleges that Anna Rosa Rocha, a member of the Rocha Family, provided false statements on loan applications for vehicles, one of which is alleged in the indictment to have been used in the family’s drug trafficking operation.

The 13 defendants facing federal criminal charges are listed below. All were taken into custody without incident this morning, unless noted :

Jose Alfredo Rocha, Sr., 52, of Nipomo

Irene Rocha, 49, or Nipomo

Jose Alfredo Rocha, Jr., 24, of Nipomo

Tony Perfecto Rocha, 23, of Nipomo

Anna Rosa Rocha, 28, of Nipomo

Maria Ynez Flores, 19, of Nipomo

Jim Elkins, 59, of Grover Beach

Emil Brieg IV, 19, of Oceano

Kyle Joseph Edelen, 31, of Nipomo

Victor Speedy Gonzales, 36, of Nipomo who is currently being sought by task force.

Frank Eugene Martinez, 26, Nipomo

Peter Bernard Salinas, 55, of Oceano

Chase Ross Twomey, 26, of Nipomo

rocha family

The 12 defendants taken into custody today are expected to make their initial appearances in United States District Court in Los Angeles on April 8.

The conspiracy count in the indictment carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years and a statutory maximum penalty of life in federal prison. The distribution charges carry a statutory maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison and a fine of $1 million. For the methamphetamine distribution charges that involve more than five grams, the mandatory minimum penalty is five years with a statutory maximum of 40 years and a $5 million fine.

For the methamphetamine distribution charges that involve more than 50 grams, the mandatory minimum is 10 years in prison with a statutory maximum of life and a $10 million fine. The use of a telephone to facilitate drug trafficking charge carries a statutory maximum of four years in prison and a fine of $250,000. The false statements charges each carry a statutory maximum of 30 years and a $1 million fine.

Rocha guns

This case is the product of an investigation by the FBI; the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Department; and the California Highway Patrol, all partners on the Central Coast Safe Streets Violent Gang Task Force.

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markslo70

In the time it took to write this article, their share of the local distribution market was probably already taken over by someone else. It does seem like our communities waste an awful lot of tax dollars on outcomes that only incentivize more crime and more trafficking. It’s too costly and probably impossible to adequately stem supply, and as such little is accomplished beyond creating more crime. We’d be far better off if policy focused on demand, or just let the market work itself out. But hey, the game revolves around perpetuating problems and profiting off of solutions to their symptoms.


mkaney

Nice to see that someone is paying attention. Also, creating problems for people is how you manufacture the poster children to manipulate the public’s perception and gain support for whatever profitable policy is being pushed.


Robert1

Remember they only come to this country to escape crime in their home land and to work in the fields to do jobs lazy Americans won’t do (eyes rolling)

The lies being told to us for years is the deception they all come to work in the fields. This is a myth and a lie –> about 4 percent work in farming; http://goo.gl/rtd7w7


Nonetheless, illegal immigrants as a group tend to be less educated than other sections of

the U.S. population: 49 percent haven’t completed high school, compared with 9 percent of

native-born Americans and 25 percent of legal immigrants.


mkaney

I’m sorry, I did not realize this family was illegal. Is there anything in the article to indicate that? Nice racist assumption.


SamLouis

Does he also have an interest in physics?


MaryMalone

Better call Saul!


SLO_Johnny

It appears that Chemistry is his subject.


SamLouis

Lucky the Trib and CCN posted that photo of what appears to be a table full of older revolvers, .22 pistols and lever/bolt action .22 rifles. It’s always a good time to vilify guns! That photo brings so much gravity to the story — NOT.


At least CCN also included a photo of the perps…


SamLouis
Maxfusion

But, but, they had a dream.


willnose

Domestic drug users of illegal substances, so called buyers, are the core of the problem!


Citizen

I’m really tired of hearing that “Nancy Pelosi nonsense”. Are patients the real problem with our healthcare system? Are children the real problem with our educational system? Think about it. How did we end up with so many buyers and addicts? Because they had easy access to cheap drugs from Mexico, that’s why.


Citizen

My comment above is an answer to Willnose.


mkaney

You know before the Mexicans were trucking meth across the border, there were already plenty of users in this country. They bought poor quality drugs from biker gangs who made it here in the U.S., routinely poisoning the environment and setting homes on fire. The reason we have so many buyers in this country is quite simple, wealth.


SamLouis

“Casual drug users should be shot.” — LAPD Chief Darryl Gates


tictac1

I agree. Start with users of alcohol, they are the most dangerous, then work down to nicotine, xanax, and finally, tricyclic anti-depressants, the most dangerous drugs in the world-


http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1725608/


whatsinaname

The reason for the picture of the weapons is really clear if you read the story.


SamLouis

Actually no, it’s not.


Anyone with any actual knowledge of firearms would find the humor in the table of older revolvers and .22 pistols and rifles — including lever and bolt action rifles.


whatsinaname

Too much sarcasm?


audidriver2010

That’s the saddest looking “arsenal” Ive ever seen… Heck I don’t deal drugs and I have better protection!!


Perspicacious

Huh? Have you been doing some of the drugs they were selling? There isn’t even a mention of guns or firearms in the story. Please explain what you meant.


whatsinaname

Sarcasm, I thought that would be evident. I can’t critique the articles in a normal fashion or my posts get deleted.


Perspicacious

You got me. :) Sorry…


joseywales

Mr. Rocha was known on the streets as “Heisenberg”…..Thank god our government dollars go towards rounding up these clowns who are conducting a business that will never go away and is willfully engaged in by to parties.


Perspicacious

“Speedy Gonzales” got away. Seriously! LOL!


SLOBIRD

When I was a kid, wasn’t there a TV character called Speedy Gonzales… Obviously, he is still going strong (lol).


Since last October there have been 60,000 illegals coming across our borders again, and last month alone, 3,000 kids. Pay attention as California is working on legislation right now for health, housing, food, etc. for ALL ILLEGALS including felons and revamping, extending and creating more taxes on the ballot for 2016 including PROP 13 which Gov Brown hated from its beginning (Happy 77 Birthday, Gov). I have my car and truck licensed out of state and my retirement check is mailed out of State so I don’t have to pay State taxes. I am done with all this waste!


kettle

So good of you to admit you do not pay your fair share but want all the free services our community provides, sound familiar? It should.


SLOBIRD

I am paying my share, I just don’t want to pay for others. I leave that to Toni Alkins, Jerry Brown, Mark Leon, Nancy Pelosi and all those wonderful folks in Hollywood and Silcon Valley. They have the money to take care of everything they feel is important to them. I have the money to take care of everything I feel is important to me, like my family. I don’t want free housing, food, medical etc. I have worked very hard and believe in taking care of myself and my family and donate where I know the cause is geniune without politicalinvolvement.


kettle

SLOBIRD says: “I have my car and truck licensed out of state and my retirement check is mailed out of State so I don’t have to pay State taxes.”


“I am paying my share” No by your own admission You Do Not pay your fair share.


NorCoMod

So you’re a resident of California but choose to license your vehicles in another state to avoid taxes. That is called FRAUD. You are as much a part of the problem as this bloated and feckless government that you’re complaining about. Basically that means that the rest of us who are paying local and state taxes are subsidizing your sorry a$$.

I assume you’re communicating here via VPN so your IP address can’t be traced.


SLOBIRD

No,I pay gas/sales tax just like you


kayaknut

When I was involved in a minor accident, the other driver had a CA drivers license but his vehicle was licensed in another state. The CHP officer said there was nothing wrong with that, but I recall when I moved to CA and got my CA license I had 30 days or so to register my vehicle in CA. So it would seem this is done often and is not a problem.


truetoblue

I can understand if you actually have a residence in another state and split time. Good business sense to take advantage of that benefit.


To play that game to just avoid taxes yet reap all the benefits of this beautiful place, not so much.


Beat it!!


Perspicacious

The CHP officer told you wrong.


SLOBIRD

Have you seen how many cars are registered in other states and yet driven in CA full time, just drive on Cal Poly campus….


kettle

“Did you know that the State of California loses millions of dollars a year in revenue from California residents who unlawfully register their vehicles in other states or countries?


Did you know that vehicle registration fees are due immediately upon accepting employment or establishing residency in the State of California?



You can report cheaters here

http://www.chp.ca.gov/prog/cheaters_2013.cgi


tictac1

Yes, do report your friends and neighbors, makes for great community. Ya know, the people that will be there to help you when the almighty state snubs you after you’ve spent your life paying your “fair share” (as decided by someone who doesn’t know you). American Stasi…


Perspicacious

Yes, doesn’t make it legal.


SamLouis

You’re also a parasite…


mkaney

This is quite funny SLOBIRD, you’re the one always standing up for law enforcement and the rule of law, and yet you yourself can’t follow it. Typical.


SLOBIRD

I do support law enforcement toits fullest. But, I totally believe in the new mantra of distribution of wealth. When John Kerry ( a resident of Massachutese) can take his $7 million yacht, build in New Zealand by the way, and register it in Rhode Island to avoid $500,000 in sales tax and $70,000 in excise tax, I don’t feel i am any more or less then the people folks making the laws and rules. What is good for them should be good for me. There are many examples of these wonderful transactions by our leaders if you do your research. If you property in different states, you have lots of advantages you can legally take advantage of. I read, learn and take advantage of the laws available to us all.


kettle

SLOBIRD says: “I do support law enforcement toits fullest.”


No, by your own admission you do not, you are unlawfully operating you car on our roads, but don’t take my word for it go visit a local CHP office.


mkaney

I don’t entirely disagree with your point, what I disagree with is your lack of consistency in applying your principals. Perhaps the subjects of this article felt that when Teva pharmaceuticals can take the same drug, package it in a pill, and make billions of dollars off of it, that what is good for the pharmaceutical company is good for them.


Perspicacious

Where are your registered to vote? If voting in CA, you are a criminal.


SLOBIRD

Really….


Perspicacious

Yes, if registered to vote in CA you are a CA resident yet register your vehicles out of state to avoid taxes and reg fees, that makes you a criminal. It is actually a misdemeanor.


SLOBIRD

Put me in line with illegals, approved for voting by the democrats running this Country. When you become a lawless city, county, state or country, and everything is up for grabs, siege the moment. It is just the way this Country has gone, everything is OK if you can better yourself for it. Working I am trying my best…


MaryMalone

True story. I know of a woman who named her child “Speedy”…

his last name was “Gonzales.” She lived in in Santa Maria, too.


Couldn’t have been the perp in this case because of the age.


mkaney

I couldn’t agree more. This is the free-market at its finest, and I don’t think there is anything wrong with it. If you want to get rid of the violence and make it safer, the solution is to end the prohibition and give these people access to the courts to settle disputes.


Rich in MB

Is anyone surprised?

How much you wanna bet that they were also receiving every type of Government Hand out?

I guess a Family that deals together stays together.


mkaney

Why do you say that? Because they were Mexican? Sounds to me like they were earning money themselves at great risk, probably receiving less in the way of handouts that your do yourself.