News and Press Releases

Twenty-six Arrested In Multi-Agency Operation Targeting Narcotics Trafficking In Bay Area

February 8, 2012

SAN FRANCISCO – On Tuesday, over 900 officers and agents executed arrest and search warrants in a large-scale takedown of individuals involved in narcotics trafficking and gang activity in the Bay Area, announced United States Attorney Melinda Haag; Stephanie Douglas, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in San Francisco; Chief Ronald L. Davis of East Palo Alto Police Department; and Chief Bryan Roberts of Menlo Park Police Department.

Local, state and federal officers – including FBI SWAT Teams from San Francisco, Los Angeles, Sacramento, Portland, Phoenix and Las Vegas; officers from East Palo Alto and Menlo Park police departments –executed over 30 search warrants and arrested 26 and seized significant quantities of money, drugs, firearms, and several vehicles in “Operation Phallen Gardens”. The majority of the arrests and searches occurred in the East Palo Alto and Menlo Park areas.

The following individuals were taken into custody based upon federal charges and made their initial appearance earlier today in federal court in San Francisco:

  • Frederick Anderson, Jr., 53
  • Michael Barnes, 54
  • Dedeaux Maurice Brown, 37
  • Monique Burns, 38
  • Caezarine Kilo Donelson, 41
  • Veronica Elliot, 30
  • Fred Lamar Finney, 27
  • Annette Hamilton, 48
  • Elizabeth Head, 50
  • Bobby Lee Jones, Jr., 51
  • John Allen Keller, Jr., 24
  • Cristian Rios Mora, 19
  • Donald Poston, 36
  • John Wayne Price, 37
  • Prince Lee Prince, Jr., 38
  • Leslie Reese, 52
  • Donnell Robinson, 37
  • Frederick Sims, 54
  • Stephanie Yvonne Smith, 54
  • Cellie Sturns, 53
  • Dustin Thomas, 25
  • Willie Charles White, 49
  • Benjamin Lee Williams, 55
  • Joseph Earl Lamont Williams, 30
  • Raymond Williams, 25
  • J. Jesse Ochoa Garcia, 41

The following individuals remain fugitives:

  • Tony Giovanni Joseph, 30
  • Derrick Lane, 39
  • Shawn Curtis McKnight, 49
  • Charles Edward Menifee, III, 20
  • Jesus Segura, 31
  • Joey Earl Williams, 48

The individuals were indicted by a federal grand jury or charged via criminal complaint for various narcotics trafficking related charges throughout the Bay Area.

“This operation demonstrates the results that can be achieved when federal and community law-enforcement partners work together,” U.S. Attorney Haag said. “Members of the San Francisco Safe Streets Task Force put their lives on the line every day to help make the Northern District of California a safe, productive and beautiful place to live.”

Operation Phallen Gardens is the result of a two-year, Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) and San Francisco Safe Streets Task Force investigation. The focus was on an associated group of individuals who supplied drugs, which included cocaine and methamphetamine, to multiple gangs in the area of East Palo Alto and Menlo Park.

“This operation highlights how effective and important our task forces are in combating violent crime in our communities,” said Special Agent in Charge Stephanie Douglas of FBI San Francisco. “The FBI and our local, state, and federal law enforcement partners are committed to working together to target those involved in gang activity and narcotics trafficking.”

“This operation resulted in a significant blow against the scourge of gangs, drugs and violence in our communities,” said East Palo Alto Chief Ronald Davis. “As gangs evolve and grow beyond jurisdictional boundaries, local, state and federal law enforcement agencies must collaborate and use our shared resources to effectively disrupt their activities and stem the violence.”

“Task forces of this nature are a crucial component for local law enforcement to effectively address violent crime and narcotic trafficking in their communities,” said Menlo Park Police Chief Bryan Roberts. “These partnerships are a force multiplier for our operations.”

The OCDETF Program was established in 1982 to conduct comprehensive, multi-level attacks on major drug trafficking and money laundering organizations. The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt, and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking and money laundering organizations and those primarily responsible for the nation’s drug supply.

The San Francisco Safe Streets Task Force consists of FBI agents, and police officers from East Palo Alto Police Department and Menlo Park Police Department. This task force was established in 1996 as a part of the FBI Safe Streets Violent Crimes Initiative, which seeks to target violent crimes through coordinated investigations.

The United States Attorney’s Office of the Northern District of California, FBI San Francisco, East Palo Alto Police Department, and the Menlo Park Police Department thank the following agencies for their assistance during the operation: FBI Field Offices in Los Angeles, Sacramento, Portland, Phoenix, and Las Vegas; the United States Marshal Service; Drug Enforcement Administration; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; California Highway Patrol, San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office, Mountain View Police Department, Newark Police Department, Redwood City Police Department, Sunnyvale Police Department, Oakland Police Department, Stockton Police Department, Fremont Police Department, Santa Clara Police Department and Palo Alto Police Department.

Please note, an indictment contains only allegations and as in all cases, the defendants must be presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.



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