SEGUIN, Texas – A massive web of drug activity is being torn apart little by little by Seguin and Guadalupe County law enforcement, with help from federal investigators.
They revealed a list of 21 targeted suspects across the state indicted on charges involving methamphetamine, cocaine and heroin.
11 of the suspects were arrested Tuesday morning in the Seguin area alone. Detectives are currently searching for the 10 others in Austin, San Marcos, Lockhart, Fort Worth and Mexico.
SWAT teams raided two homes Tuesday. One was in Seguin and the other was in Geronimo, where officers broke through the doors and windows looking for 39-year-old Jesse Ricky Escobedo, who is accused of being the local leader and supply source for a drug enterprise stretching across the border.
Seguin Police Chief Terry Nichols said Escobedo was arrested without incident.
“Then you have people who transport, people who are retail distributors. So they’re the ones out selling at the street level, mid-level suppliers, so it’s an organization,” Nichols said. “We discovered they had ties to bigger wholesale distributors who are operating from the Republic of Mexico and distributing not only narcotics here in the Seguin, San Antonio area, but also pushing narcotics up to San Marcos, Austin, and all the way up to Fort Worth and Dallas area,” said DEA Special Agent Dante Sorianello.
Nichols, Sorianello, and Guadalupe County Sheriff Arnold S. Zwicke stood in front of the media Tuesday, explaining the two-year investigation they’ve been carrying out along with the U.S. Marshal’s Service, Internal Revenue Service, Texas Department of Public Safety, Bexar County Sheriff’s Office, Terrell Hills Police Department and the Hays County Narcotics Task Force.
Up until Tuesday, the two-year investigation had led to the arrest of 47 people. Tuesday, the 21 additional suspects were added to the list. Since the beginning of the investigation, officers have seized about 22 kilograms of methamphetamine, one kilogram of cocaine, 400 grams of crack cocaine and 145 grams of heroin. The entire investigation started with Seguin Police officers noticing an uptick in methamphetamine arrests and seizures. They called state and federal investigators who began to work with them, agreeing that meth is the main problem in the area.
“It’s able to be produced in a location across the border at quantities and purity levels never seen before in the country,” he said.
Sorianello said this is a complicated network of criminals and there is not just one specific cartel responsible.
“We do have some gang members and some other drug traffickers. The links into Mexico, comes from a couple of your different cartels, the smuggling, but that’s an end we’re still working right now. Once you peel back the onion and start looking at these organizations you see how large and complicated and organized they really are. And it’s the teamwork we all did here together that led us to this success,” Sorianello said.
He said there are more warrants to come, as the widespread investigation continues.
Until then, Nichols has a message for the criminals: “If you’re drug trafficking in Seguin and Guadalupe County, we will target you, and we will arrest you.”
The suspects arrested today are:
- Jesse Rick Escobedo, 39, of Seguin
- Anna Flota, 33, of Seguin
- Reynaldo Gil AKA "Big Boy", 33, of Seguin
- Brandon "B-Loc" Graves, 33, of Seguin
- Brian Martinez, 40, of Seguin
- Sally "Rosie" Moreno, 37, of Seguin
- Juan Eugenio Perales, 42, of Seguin
- Raquel Rivera, 28, of Seguin
- Michael Schmidt, 27, of Seguin
- Ronald Clark, 40, of Universal City
- Russell Bosquez, 45, of Luling