San Diego

37 Documented Gang Members and Drug Dealers Charged in Crackdown

During a crackdown, 37 documented gang members were charged with distributing methamphetamine and illegal guns in San Diego, according to the U.S. Attorney's office.

Twenty-two of the 37 suspects were arrested this week and the other individuals were already in custody.

The San Diego Police Department (SDPD) and Homeland Security Investigations Gangs & Weapons Group co-led the year-long investigation known as "Seeing Blue."

According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, the defendants are documented members or associates of gangs in San Diego.

Undercover agents were able to identify several gang members, leading to their arrests, including Soulidao Chounlaboudy, Ruben Contreras-Ramirez, and John Quarles.

Investigators said Quarles ran a network from Teralta Park in City Heights and distributed dozens of pounds of methamphetamine. He made tens of thousands of dollars selling the drugs.

In the span of two days, authorities served 10 search warrants and seized more than three pounds of methamphetamine, along with 17 firearms and more than $25,000 in drugs.

Chounlaboudy and Ramirez face several charges including consipiracy to distribute methamphetamine, and felony possession of a firearm and ammunition. 

Quarles faces conspiracy to distribute cocaine and faces up to 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine, if convicted.

“Gangs and drugs are infesting many of our neighborhoods and creating a violent culture that is unsafe for residents,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Alana W. Robinson, in a statement. “With today’s action, we are reclaiming these parks and streets for our families, our children and our communities.”

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