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Local News

Text Messages Lead Police to Suspected Drug Dealers

Santa Maria men face charges after a detective sets up a fake narcotics exchange

Reymundo Carlos Escobedo
Reymundo Carlos Escobedo

Errant text messages led to the arrests Wednesday of two suspected methamphetamine dealers, according to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department.

Department spokesman Drew Sugars said narcotics detectives were alerted about 7 a.m. Tuesday that a member of the Santa Maria Police Department’s Narcotics Suppression Team had received several errant text messages from a person trying to narcotics.

The detective set up a meeting and made a deal with the suspect to purchase 2 grams of methamphetamine, according to Sugars.

The detective then alerted the Sheriff’s Narcotics Unit, whose members arrived at the location, where suspect Reymundo Carlos Escobedo, 39, of Santa Maria, was allegedly awaiting the arrival of the buyer. Sugars said detectives found about 2 grams of meth in Escobedo’s possession.

During the investigation, Escobedo’s suspected meth supplier John Martin Silvera, 37, of Santa Maria, arrived at the location accompanied by a passenger, Antonio Madrigal.

John Martin Silvera
John Martin Silvera

Sugars said Silvera was found to be in possession of about 7 grams of meth, in addition to text messages on his cell phone related to the narcotics transaction.

Escobedo and Silvera were arrested and booked into the Santa Barbara County Jail on charges of possession of a controlled substance for sale, transportation of a controlled substance and criminal conspiracy. Bail was set at $30,000 each, according to Sugars.

He said Madrigal was issued a citation for being under the influence of a controlled substance and released.

Noozhawk managing editor Michelle Nelson can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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