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Press Release

Kings County Man Charged in Operation Red Reaper Sentenced to 14 Years in Prison for Methamphetamine Trafficking

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of California

FRESNO, Calif. — Louie Molina, 52, of Hanford, was sentenced yesterday to 14 years in prison for Possession with Intent to Distribute Over 500 Grams of Methamphetamine, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.

According to court documents, in March 2019, various agencies partnered in Operation Red Reaper, an investigation into the Nuestra Familia prison gang and the Norteño street gang in Kings County. During the investigation, recorded interceptions on a wiretap revealed that Molina was supplying methamphetamine to a codefendant, who was a target of the investigation. On May 3, 2019, Molina delivered about a half a pound of methamphetamine to his codefendant.  Law enforcement officers then attempted a to conduct a traffic stop on his car, but Molina sped off and led them on a high-speed chase. During the pursuit, Molina tossed the additional pound of methamphetamine out of his car.  After apprehending Molina, the officers recovered the methamphetamine.

This case was the product of an investigation by the Kings County Gang Task Force, Agents of the Special Operations Unit which is a team of agents from the California Department of Justice and the California Highway Patrol, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, the FBI, the Kings County District Attorney's Office, and the Tulare County Sheriff's Office. The DEA, ATF, U.S. Marshals Service, and Homeland Security Investigations all assisted with the takedown. Assistant United States Attorney Justin J. Gilio prosecuted the case.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the U.S. Department of Justice launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.

The case was investigated under the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF). OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. For more information about Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces, please visit

Updated May 7, 2024

Project Safe Neighborhoods
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