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Authorities arrest seven, seize 19 pounds of methamphetamine in Sonoma County and San Jose

Authorities have arrested seven people and seized 19 pounds of methamphetamine in coordinated raids on homes in Sonoma County and San Jose, the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office said Thursday.

The Sheriff’s Office and other law enforcement agencies served three search warrants in Santa Rosa, one in Petaluma and one in San Jose that led to the Wednesday arrests and narcotics seizure. In addition to the drugs, authorities recovered scales, packaging material and over $12,000 in cash.

The warrants were part of an ongoing investigation by Sonoma County Sheriff’s narcotics detectives, the Sonoma County Auto Theft Task Force ― a multiagency group that specializes in vehicle theft investigations ― and U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agents from Santa Rosa, Oakland and San Jose.

Sonoma County Sheriff’s Sgt. Juan Valencia said those arrested do not appear to have ties to gangs. Also, authorities said this group of arrests is neither related to the massive federal drug bust in San Francisco announced last week, nor a recent seizure by Sheriff’s deputies of firearms and 100 pounds of marijuana in Santa Rosa.

Valencia would not say whether there are more suspects being sought in the ongoing investigation, but noted such drug stings often lead to additional arrests.

Related to Wednesday’s sting, Christian Mondragon-Mendoza, 22, of Santa Rosa, and Aida Sanchez-Lopez, 23, of Santa Rosa, were booked into Sonoma County Jail. Each is being held on $100,000 bail on suspicion of possessing a controlled substance for sale and other suspected crimes.

Jacqueline Leon-Ortiz, 22, of Santa Rosa, and Macey Hester, 23, of Santa Rosa, were each released with a citation on suspicion of possessing a controlled substance for sale and other suspected crimes.

Antonio Cruz-Rochin, 26, of Santa Rosa, was released with a citation on suspicion of violating probation, driving without a license and concealing a knife that could be used as a weapon.

Meanwhile, Karen Chavez, 29, of San Jose, and Cesar Rojas-Jimenez, 29, of San Jose, were booked into jail there, each on suspicion of possessing a controlled substance for sale and other suspected crimes.

You can reach Staff Writer Ethan Varian at ethan.varian@pressdemocrat.com or 707-521-5412. On Twitter @ethanvarian

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