Friday, October 3, 2008

3 more Pasco men named after arrests (Tri-City Herald)

3 more Pasco men named after arrests

By Paula Horton, Herald staff writer
Friday, Oct. 03, 2008

The names of three more Pasco men arrested as part of a multi-agency drug raid in the Tri-Cities were released Thursday.

Enrique Lopez-Valencia, Fernando Vasquez-Alfaro and Pedro Ezequiel Zazueta-Bueno, all of Pasco, made their first appearances in U.S. District Court in Yakima on Thursday morning.

The men were arrested on suspicion of immigration violations when local and federal law enforcement officers raided about a dozen homes in the Tri-Cities and Spokane area.

They are being held in the Yakima County jail.

The raids capped an 18-month investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration into a large methamphetamine distribution ring.

Four Pasco residents were among 10 arrested on a 15-count indictment handed down by a federal grand jury Sept. 11. They were identified Wednesday because they were named in the indictment.

The indictment, however, remained sealed.

Lopez-Valencia and Zazueta-Bueno were charged with possessing a forged, counterfeit, altered and falsely-made alien registration card.

An Immigrant and Customs Enforcement agent said the cards were obviously not valid government-issued alien registration cards, court documents said. The photographs weren't fixed as part of the card and the laminate didn't contain the correct security feature.

The numbers listed on the cards are assigned to a man and woman born in Venezuela, documents said.

Lopez-Valencia was arrested when agents searched a home at 420 N. Elm St. in Pasco. Zazueta-Bueno was found when agents raided some mobile homes at 925 N. Elm St.

Vasquez-Alfaro, also known as Jose Roberto Madrigal-Lopez, was charged with being an alien in the United States after deportation.

Vasquez-Alfaro is a Mexican national who was deported from the U.S. on Jan. 30 at Nogales, Ariz., documents said. He was found in Kennewick and did not have authorization to be back in the U.S., documents said.

The four Pasco residents accused of distributing meth in Eastern Washington and three other states pleaded innocent Tuesday in Yakima.

Alejandro Vizcarra-Mullan, 25, Modesta Rivas-Pena, 44, Ana Maria Zazueta-Bueno, 43, and Jesus Rogelia Bueno-Fuentes, 58, appeared before Magistrate Judge James P. Hutton.

They'll be in federal court in Yakima on Monday for a detention hearing. They are being held in the Benton County jail.

All four are facing one count each of conspiracy to distribute 500 grams or more of meth. Federal officials say the group operated in Washington, Idaho, Montana and North Dakota.

About 200 local and federal law enforcement officers swarmed more than a dozen homes early Wednesday to bust the suspected drug ring believed to be operating in Eastern Washington since April 2004.

Officers seized 26 pounds of suspected methamphetamine, more than $100,000 in cash and several weapons and vehicles.

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