Traffic Stop Leads to Seizure of $2.1 Million Worth of Narcotics; Vehicle Owner Charged
Assistant U. S. Attorney Sherri Walker Hobson (619) 961-0287
NEWS RELEASE SUMMARY – November 17, 2016
SAN DIEGO – San Ysidro resident Ricardo Lujan was charged in federal court today with a drug-related offense after an Oceanside police officer discovered millions of dollars’ worth of methamphetamine and cocaine hidden inside the floorboards, door panels, center console and elsewhere in Lujan’s vehicle.
According to a federal complaint, the Oceanside Police Officer was conducting random vehicle registration checks at 12:40 a.m. on Harbor Drive in Oceanside. While doing this he noticed a car with expired tags. The officer then saw Lujan enter the Mitsubishi Endeavor SUV and attempt to leave the area. The officer stopped the vehicle.
While talking to the officer, Lujan, the registered owner of the vehicle, appeared nervous and agreed to a search of his vehicle. A Border Patrol canine handler responded to the traffic stop to assist Oceanside Police. The dog alerted to the odor of narcotics.
Agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration, San Diego Narcotics Task Force, subsequently searched Lujan’s vehicle and found 99 packages that were vacuum sealed in plastic containers of cocaine and 58 rectangular vacuum sealed in plastic containers of methamphetamine.
The agents seized approximately 89.50 kilograms of cocaine and approximately 68.90 kilograms of methamphetamine.
The estimated wholesale of the cocaine is approximately $1.7 million dollars. The estimated wholesale value of the methamphetamine is approximately $450,000.
Lujan is scheduled to appear in federal court before U.S. Magistrate Judge Barbara Major for arraignment hearing on November 18 at 2 p.m.
Ricardo Lujan, age 44
San Ysidro, California
Possession with intent to distribute
Title 21, United States Code, Section 841
Oceanside Police Department
Drug Enforcement Administration, San Diego Narcotics Task Force
U.S. Border Patrol, San Clemente Station
*The charges and allegations contained in a complaint are merely accusations, and the defendant is considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.