Southern California breaking news and trends

Police, feds indict alleged Pomona methamphetamine ring tied to Mexical drug cartel

Operation Crystal Light

Rina Palta / KPCC

Assistant U.S. Attorney Shawn Nelson announces charges against an alleged Pomona-based meth smuggling ring with ties to Mexican drug cartel and local street gangs.

A federal indictment unsealed Thursday brought charges against 27 members of an alleged meth smuggling operation out of Pomona and Ontario, California. In a predawn raid, federal and local agencies arrested 16 of the indicted defendants. Officials are calling the bust "Operation Crystal Light."

A few additional defendants were already in custody on separate charges and four are fugitives. Police are looking specifically for the alleged ring leader, Jose Juan Garcia Barron — who they say has ties to the Mexican drug carted La Familia Michoacana (LFM). 

Authorities say Barron would purchase meth from a supplier in Mexico and arrange its shipment to the U.S., where another defendant, Martin Barron Alcazar, would receive the shipment and direct it to a stash house in Ontario. 

Assistant U.S. Attorney Shawn Nelson said that the operation resembled the one portrayed in the James Bond Movie, "License to Kill."


Ontario teen thwarts would-be kidnapper; police release sketch of suspect with huge flat head

Ontario Police Department

A composite sketch of the man who attempted to kidnap a 15-year-old girl in Ontario on Wednesday, May 23, 2012.

Police in Ontario are hunting a man who attempted to kidnap a 15-year-old girl yesterday morning, and have released a composite sketch they hope will help catch the guy.

Luckily, the victim, a student at Colony High School in Ontario, managed to fight off the assailant with her fists Wednesday morning and find help, according to the L.A. Times.

The incident began at about 7 a.m. when the girl, who was walking alone to school, noticed she was being followed by a man in a gray truck near the intersection of Turner Avenue and Golden Trails Street.

She realized he was following her and ran, but the man swung his truck into a driveway in front of her, cutting her off, KTLA reports.

He then jumped out of the truck and grabbed her, but the girl fought back, punching him in the stomach until he released her. Breaking his grip, she ran to a nearby house screaming “Help me, help me!” according to a witness who spoke with KTLA.


33 caged dogs rescued from filthy SoCal puppy mill barn

animal cages

Photo by mr. rollers via Flickr Creative Commons

Animal cages from an old zoo. The 33 dogs rescued on Wednesday from a puppy mill were found inside small collapsible crates inside a dark barn.

Officials from the Humane Society and SPCA rescued more than 30 caged dogs of different breeds, some pregnant, from an Ontario-Upland area puppy mill on Wednesday.

The dogs -- Shih Tzus, Yorkshire terriers, Pekingese, poodles, basset hounds, Chihuahuas, a husky and others -- were discovered standing in cages of their own feces and urine, said animal control officials.

Ranging in age from 3-weeks-old to 5-years-old, the animals were found without water, in small collapsible kennels, located in a barn without light or proper ventilation, according to the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin.

45-year-old Luis Reynoso and 42-year-old Flor Sanchez will be charged with misdemeanor animal cruelty.

Puppy sales were the primary source of income for the pair, and they were selling the animals for $100 each, say investigators.