An anonymous tip and five weeks of an undercover Anaheim police investigation resulted in the seizure in Mission Viejo of 121 pounds of cocaine, $17,000 in cash and the arrests of five people in connection with an alleged drug trafficking ring, authorities said Wednesday.
Acting on a tip that a major drug ring was operating from a house in the 6100 block of Camino Correr in Anaheim, undercover police set up surveillance around the middle of April, said Lt. Jack Flanagan, head of the police narcotics unit.
"There was a lot of traffic in and out of there that fit our profile of people who traffic in large amounts of narcotics," Flanagan said.
Tuesday evening the wait paid off. Police followed a car to Mission Viejo to a business complex where the driver switched his car for another, Flanagan said.
Police stopped the cars, got a search warrant and found 6 kilograms of cocaine, he said.
Later that night, police armed with a search warrant stopped another car as it left a home in the 27600 block of Ruisenor in Mission Viejo, Flanagan said. Inside the car, police found 49 kilograms or 98 pounds of cocaine. There was $17,000 in cash at the home, he said.
In the early hours of Wednesday morning, police then served search warrants at the home in Anaheim and at an apartment in the 13900 block of Erin Street in Garden Grove, where a suspect was arrested, Flanagan said.
"Apparently it was all one caper," said Anaheim Police Lt. Jack Parra.
Arrested over a 12-hour period Tuesday and Wednesday on suspicion of possession of cocaine for sale were: Julio Cesar Corea, 29, Luis Sanchez, 28, Luis Alvarez, 30, and Jorge Ivan, 30, all of Costa Mesa, and Senejoa Ortega Salvador, 31, of Garden Grove. All were being held Wednesday night at the Anaheim City Jail in lieu of bail of $1 million each.
Police also seized 17 new vehicles with an estimated value of $97,000.
Sixteen Anaheim police officers were joined by four sheriff's deputies in making the arrests.