San Diego

Neighbors Report ‘Big Boom' as Federal, Local Authorities Raid Four Homes Across County

Agents with the Department of Homeland Security and the San Diego County Sheriff's Department raided four homes across the county Wednesday in connection with what officials called a “suspected money laundering conspiracy.”

One of the homes officials descended on was along Vista Hermosa Way in the hillside community of Rancho San Diego.

At about 10 a.m., agents wearing Homeland Security Investigations vests, local officers, and law enforcement dogs arrived at a two-story mansion just off Vista Grande Road.

Neighbors described hearing agents on a loud speaker telling the home on Vista Hermosa Way to open the front door. The Department of Homeland Security confirmed agents served a search warrant for the location.

Resident Kathleen Oatsvall told NBC 7 the agents remained outside for 15 minutes – and the she heard a “big boom.”

“There was a loud, a very loud boom -- sounded like a concussion bomb or something, but it was extremely loud,” said neighbor Gary Oatsvall.

Gary Oatsvall said men wearing helmets and khaki lined up near his fence. The street was filled with more than a dozen sheriff’s deputies and agents.

“They were pretty intense,” he said.

An NBC 7 news crew at the scene said agents were spotted carrying items out of the home and at least one person was detained and released.

The raid in Rancho San Diego lasted more than six hours.

The home was in the community east of El Cajon and northeast of Valhalla High School.

A mansion along Greystone Drive in Jamul was another one of the four homes raided Wednesday.

The home was raided after the investigation in Rancho San Diego.

The Department of Homeland Security confirmed no arrests have been by 3 p.m. Wednesday.

The Homeland Security Investigations branch focuses on financial, human smuggling, cyber, and drug crimes, as well as others.

A fifth home was raided, in connection with the investigation, in Los Angeles County.

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