OKANOGAN — Sheriff Frank Rogers says the arrest of three men, the confiscation of several pounds of drugs and $20,000 to $30,000 in cash on Thursday will “put a damper on the drug trade” in Okanogan County.
The arrests and confiscations came about 3:30 p.m. Thursday as officials from numerous agencies executed search warrants. The locations were at La Espiga De Oro grocery store in Okanogan, a trailer in Malott, and a home in the 10 block of Elm Street in Omak. The residence belongs to the owner of the grocery store, Marcelino Corrales, 47.
He and two others were arrested on drug charges, Rogers said. The other two are Alberto Montejano-Rangel, 32, of Okanogan and Rodrigo Taizan-Rodriguez, 26 of Bridgeport. The sheriff said he did not know specific charges for each man.
The arrests and searches came after a two-year investigation by the North Central Washington Narcotics Task Force, Rogers said. Also assisting on Thursday were the Okanogan County Sheriff’s Office and the U.S. Border Patrol.
The drug task force spent $18,000 to buy 2.5 pounds of cocaine and 1 pound of marijuana over the past two years, Rogers said.
Confiscated on Thursday were three-quarters of a pound of heroin, a pound of cocaine, a pound and a half of methamphetamine, weapons, vehicles and between $20,000 and $30,000 in cash, Rogers said.
The investigation will wrap up soon with additional arrests and searches, the sheriff said.
“The sad thing is, this will put a damper on the drug traffic for a while, but somebody will replace them; there’s always somebody else out there,” Rogers said.