General Crime

German Alvarado and Hector Vaca arrested in Watsonville as alleged major drug traffickers



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Two men considered major drug traffickers were arrested in Watsonville on Wednesday and federal and local investigators seized more a pound of methamphetamine and $40,000 in cash, a police spokesman said. The arrests of Watsonville residents German Alvarado, 39, and Hector Vaca, 28, followed a month-long investigation by the Santa Cruz County Anti-Crime Team’s Narcotics Task Force and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, crime team supervisor Sgt. Peter Hansen said.

Both men are suspected of being high-level narcotics traffickers operating out of Watsonville, Hansen said. Starting at about 2 p.m. Wednesday, the task force and DEA agents served search warrants at the suspects’ homes, one in the 300 block of Locust Street and the other in the 100 block of Airport Road, according to Hansen. During the searches, task force members and the DEA confiscated more than a pound of methamphetamine, quantities of additional illegal drugs, evidence of the transportation and sales of narcotics and $40,000 in U.S. currency, Hansen said.

Alvarado and Vaca were arrested on suspicion of possessing methamphetamine for sale, conspiracy to sell the drug, transportation of methamphetamine and possession of a controlled substance, according to Hansen. Personnel from the Santa Cruz County Auto Theft Reduction Task Force, the California Highway Patrol, the sheriff’s office and the Santa Cruz Police Department assisted in the searches and arrests, Hansen said. From an investigation, law enforcement officials learned that Vaca was on probation stemming from an April 2013 case in Southern California involving the transportation of two kilos of cocaine, he said.

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