9 charged in narcotics trafficking investigation

By on January 21, 2011

Kane County—A lengthy joint investigation into cocaine distribution in Aurora, conducted by the North Central Narcotics Task Force (NCNTF), with assistance from the Aurora Police Dept., the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE), Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Kane County State’s Attorney’s Office and the United States Attorney’s Office, ended last month with the arrests of the nine subjects who are facing felony narcotics charges.

Those charged are:
• Manuel V. Carranza, 24, of Montgomery, charged with Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Deliver (Class X felony), Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance (Class 1), Unlawful Delivery of a Controlled Substance (Class X).

• Roberto C. Hernandez, 27, of Aurora, charged with Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Deliver (Class X), Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance (Class 1), False Report of Stolen Motor Vehicle (Class 2), and Aggravated Fleeing and Eluding (Class 4).

• Eddie L. Hernandez, 19, of Aurora, charged with Unlawful Use of a Weapon within 1,000 feet of a School (Class 3), and Unlawful use of a Weapon (Class 4).

• Guadalupe Gil, 22, of Montgomery, charged with Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Deliver (Class X), and Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance (Class 1).

• Helen M. Finneran, 40, of Lombard, Ill., charged with Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Deliver (Class X).

• Jose A. Nunez-Martinez, 36, of Aurora, charged with Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Deliver (Class 1), and Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance (Class 4).

• Jose M. Baez, 26 of Aurora, charged with Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance (Class 4).

• Rodolfo Gallardo Jr., 19, of Aurora, charged with Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Deliver (Class 1), and Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance (Class 4).

• Gabriela E. Hernandez, 17, of Aurora, charged with False Report of Stolen Motor Vehicle (Class 2).

According to NCNTF Director Bill Backus, during the course of the investigation, which NCNTF started in April 2010, undercover agents reportedly conducted numerous hand-to-hand purchases of cocaine from Carranza in Aurora. During negotiations to purchase multiple kilograms of cocaine, NCNTF agents learned Carranza had sources of supply that had the means to smuggle cocaine into the United States from Mexico.

In July, NCNTF requested assistance from both the Aurora Police Department and the Chicago office of the ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations. Over the course of the next several months, law enforcement personnel from all three agencies conducted extensive covert surveillance on multiple suspects and obtained several telephone intercepts (“wire taps”) to gather additional information on their alleged operations.

Backus said that information obtained during the surveillance and wiretaps was forwarded to law enforcement agencies in other states, which resulted in additional investigations. He could not elaborate on further details because the investigations are ongoing.

According to Backus, the investigation resulted in the seizure of approximately $415,000 in U.S. currency, as well as three vehicles, a handgun and more than three kilograms of cocaine. Agents are also pursuing the forfeiture of one residence. Based on the evidence obtained during the investigation, authorities allege Carranza, Roberto Hernandez and Eddie Hernandez were all involved in the distribution of multiple kilogram amounts of cocaine throughout the Aurora area. The additional subjects were purportedly involved in further distribution of the cocaine in smaller amounts.

In addition to the subjects listed, Backus said charges are being reviewed on more individuals involved in the case, and additional arrests are expected in the future.

All subjects charged in this investigation are presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

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The Elburn Herald has been serving the Kaneland communities since 1908. To reach our editor, Keith Beebe, email info@elburnherald.com, or call (630) 365-6446, ext. 105. To reach our owner/publisher, Ryan Wells, email RyanWells@elburnherald.com, or call (630) 365-6446, ext. 107.

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