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Several Sacramento Residents Charged In Illegal Drug Trafficking Operation

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) - Several Sacramento residents have been arrested in connection with a drug trafficking organization that imported its drugs from Mexico.

A federal grand jury returned an 11-count indictment Thursday against Jose Lopez-Zamora, 26; Leonardo Flores Beltran, 29; Christian Anthony Romero, 25; Joaquin Sotelo Valdez, 24; Sandro Escobedo, 32; Erika Zamora Rojo, 45; and Alejandro Tello, 22; all of Sacramento; and Jason Lee, 48, of Sparks, Nevada, and Rudi Flores, 27, of Manteca, United States Attorney McGregor Scott announced.

All nine suspects are charged with conspiracy to distribute fentanyl, cocaine, and methamphetamine as well as either fentanyl distribution or possession with intent to distribute fentanyl, Scott says.

Jose Aguilar Saucedo, 22, of Sacramento, is also charged with three counts of fentanyl distribution.

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According to court documents, Jose Lopez-Zamora was the U.S.-based leader of a drug trafficking organization responsible for importing from Mexico and distributing in the United States tens of thousands of fentanyl-laced counterfeit oxycodone (M-30) pills, as well as cocaine and methamphetamine. Law enforcement officials seized more than 20,000 of these pills during the investigation, Scott says.

According to investigators, the suspects were aware that fentanyl pills had been responsible for multiple overdoses and overdose deaths in the area.

This case is the product of a multi-agency investigation.

If convicted, Aguilar Saucedo faces up to 40 years in prison, and the other defendants face a maximum sentence of life in prison.


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