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Five arrested in drug investigation

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By David Giuliani

Five people were arrested last week after authorities carried out a search warrant in a drug investigation.

Agents of the Region 4 Narcotics Task Force last Thursday found large amounts of marijuana, cocaine and drug paraphernalia such as weighing scales inside a Gonzales Ranch single-wide mobile home, according to a criminal complaint. They also discovered several loaded guns, officials said.

Facing the most charges is Carlos Gonzales, 27, of Gonzales Ranch. He was charged with cocaine trafficking, conspiracy, distributing marijuana, tampering with evidence, possession of drug paraphernalia, and resisting or obstructing and officer.

Also arrested was Jacqueline Encinias, 21, of Las Vegas on charges of conspiracy to traffic cocaine, conspiracy to distribute marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, and resisting or obstructing an officer.

Seledon Sanchez, 19, of Ribera; Jesse Martinez, 18, of Albuquerque; and Priscilla Lopez-Sanchez, 48, 615 S. Pacific were each arrested on a single count of resisting or obstructing an officer.

When task force agents showed up, they found a large amount of cocaine on Gonzales, the complaint states. He allegedly became combative with officers and began to struggle with them, as did the others who were later arrested.

At one point, Gonzales threw several plastic baggies containing marijuana toward the wood stove — one of which was destroyed by fire, the others falling on the living room floor, the complaint states.

Gonzales admitted he had been selling marijuana, officials said. He was taken to the San Miguel County jail, where he was held on a $25,000 cash-only bond.

Encinias reportedly fled the house when the agents tried to detain her. She was immediately apprehended. She said she lived with her boyfriend, Gonzales, at the house, the complaint states.

Sgt. Mack Allingham, the task force’s commander, said in a statement that there was a potential of people being seriously injured or killed during the drug raid because the alleged dealers had access to loaded weapons.

He also said many people notified authorities that Gonzales Ranch, Ribera and Villanueva are drug havens because they are rural areas with little or no law enforcement. Recently, residents from those areas held a meeting with law enforcement officials to discuss their frustration with the drug problem.

Las Vegas Police Chief Gary Gold, the task force’s chairman, said the task force will continue to arrest people who are selling illegal drugs.