Feds discuss drug cartel take down in Evansville area

Updated: Sep. 15, 2020 at 5:46 PM CDT
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EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - A news conference was held Tuesday to discuss a large drug distribution network that was taken down in the Evansville area.

United States Attorney Josh Minkler, along with the Evansville Vanderburgh County Joint Task Force, representatives from the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the U.S. Marshals held the briefing.

Minkler said they announced in July, funding to fight drug trafficking.

[Previous: Vanderburgh Co. declared high-intensity drug trafficking area]

He announced Tuesday a drug cartel out of Mexico, with a goal to provide meth and fentanyl to our area, has been dismantled.

“Nothing to attack this organization was spared," said U.S. Attorney Josh Minkler. "Their goal was to disrupt and dismantle this organization.”

Minkler said nine people have been arrested throughout the country after grand jury indictments. He says they will be taken to Evansville to face federal charges.

Two people have been charged, but not yet arrested. Authorities believe they are in Mexico.

Those arrested and or are a fugitive include:

Rudolfo Ibarra-Hernandez, Aka “Rudy,”48, Mexico FUGITIVE

Juan Guzman, Aka “Hollywood,” 33, Mexico FUGITIVE

Juan Tellez, 44, Phoenix, AZ

Alexus Ortiz, 21, Clarksville, TN

Rayvin Yates, Aka “Ray,”26, Dayton, OH

Cesar Castro, 45, San Diego, CA

Jovanny Contreas-Vazquez, 30, Los Angeles, CA

Maria Castaneda-Villabolos , 33, Los Angeles, CA

Ruby Hernandez, 37, Federal Way, WA

Tania Gervacio, 30, El Cajon, CA

Angelique McCleary, 31, Carlsbad, CA

Officials say the organization used motor vehicles, commercial airlines, United States Postal Service, United Parcel Service and Federal Express to transport the methamphetamine, fentanyl and US currency to and from the southern Indiana area.

During the investigation, law enforcement recovered over 123 pounds of methamphetamine, 769 grams of fentanyl powder, 114 fentanyl pills, 500 oxycodone pills, 345 grams of heroin, and $14,346 in U.S. currency.

This case was investigated by the DEA, the Evansville Vanderburgh County Joint Task Force, Homeland Security Investigations, IRS Criminal Investigations, U.S. Marshal Service, and the U.S Postal Inspection Service.

“There were 7 different DEA field divisions throughout the country and in turn, all the drugs were coming to Evansville," said Michael Gannon, DEA Assistant Special Agent in Charge. "So, you can see how networks operate. They have people in Mexico, they have members of that bring drugs where ever they can get rid of it.”

Officials say Ibarra-Hernandez and Juan Guzman of Mexico, who are accused of supplying the drugs from a drug cartel to the Evansville area, are still at large and believed to be in Mexico.

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