Federal prosecutors filed charges Friday against five people accused of possessing nearly 60 pounds of crystal methamphetamine, also known as "ice."
Law enforcement received a tip April 10 that there was a large shipment of meth being delivered to Oklahoma City. Law enforcement agents tracked the drugs as they were transferred from one vehicle to another at a truck stop at Interstate 40 and Morgan Road.
The illegal shipment was then followed to a house in the 4300 block of N.W. 12th Street.
"We didn't want to get them in the house, we didn't want to get in a situation where we would put other people in danger," said DEA Assistant Special Agent in Charge Rich Salter.
Special Agent Salter says agents covertly followed the men from the Flying J truck stop at I-40 and Morgan road, where agents watched the men transfer the drugs to their car.
A task force of DEA agents and other law enforcement converged on the vehicle outside the house. They found 57 pounds of meth with an estimated street value of $2.5 million.
Agents arrested five people; Jose Eduardo Osuna Valdez, 25, Brian Jesus Garcia-Pena, 18, Jesus Hernandez-Carillo, 20, Jose Irai Garcia-Pena, 20, and Gael Guadalupe Zanuedo-Arredendo, 20.
"These were significant drug traffickers, they were Mexican nationals and they had set up shop here in Oklahoma City with the purpose of distributing methamphetamine," said Salter.
All five defendants are from Mexico. They've been charged with conspiracy to possess and actually possessing methamphetamine. If convicted, each defendant faces at least 10 years in prison.
"Because this is a very large amount: 57 pounds of methamphetamine, that drives the possible penalty," said Sanford C. Coats, US Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma.
Coats says all the men are part of a drug cell. They will continue the investigation including working to determine the source of the meth.
Agent Salter with the DEA says without all the cooperation between several law enforcement agencies, they couldn't have put together this operation so quickly.