On Monday, September 25th, a California sheriff’s deputy, who may have connections to a Mexican drug cartel, faced legal proceedings. This followed the discovery of more than 100 pounds of fentanyl in his vehicle during a search, as reported by USA Today. The deputy in question, Jorge Orceguera-Rocha, aged 25, is now facing two felony charges. These charges encompass possessing narcotics with the intent to sell and transporting narcotics. Additionally, he has been charged with possessing a loaded firearm during the commission of a felony.
Orceguera-Rocha, who had been serving with the Riverside County Sheriff’s Office for a span of four years, is presently in custody with a bail set at $5 million. This decision came after the sheriff’s office presented arguments that his potential affiliations with a Mexican drug cartel raise concerns about him fleeing.
Last week, the sheriff’s office disclosed that it had been conducting an inquiry into a drug operation and identified Orceguera-Rocha as a pivotal figure in the transportation of narcotics into the United States. Investigators closely monitored his phone communications and scrutinized his activities during their investigation.
On September 16th, investigators came across information indicating that Orceguera-Rocha intended to drive to a known location where narcotics were stashed in Victorville, as detailed in an arrest affidavit. His vehicle was observed approximately 80 miles to the east of Los Angeles, in the vicinity of Banning, around 1:00 p.m.
Subsequently, the vehicle was located two hours later in San Bernardino County before ultimately arriving at a residence in Victorville. At this location, Orceguera-Rocha made a phone call to an undisclosed family member and proceeded to enter the garage.
Following his departure from the residence, investigators trailed Orceguera-Rocha, and subsequently, a traffic stop was initiated by law enforcement officers, along with the assistance of a drug-sniffing canine.
During this encounter, deputies discovered four trash bags in the trunk of his vehicle, which were filled with packages containing a substance identified as fentanyl. According to details outlined in the arrest affidavit, these packages contained a staggering total of 520,000 blue pills infused with fentanyl, with a combined weight of 104 pounds. Additionally, a loaded Glock pistol was found on the rear seat of the vehicle.
Orceguera-Rocha has entered a plea of not guilty to the charges and is slated to appear in court once again on October 31st, at which time a judge will reconsider his bail.