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Arrest includes 18 guns, $11K, drugs, fake IDs, more

A photo of alleged money and guns found during a Jan. 30 raid in Southeast Albuquerque (State Police)

Claudio Chavez (MDC)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A drug bust in the International District last week turned up much more than dope.

New Mexico State Police say they found more than a dozen guns — some of them stolen — thousands in cash, a fair amount of fentanyl and a Los Lunas Police badge when they raided the home of 35-year-old Army veteran Claudio Chavez on Jan. 30.

Chavez was booked into the Metropolitan Detention Center and charged with four counts of drug trafficking and three counts of possession of stolen property.

According to a criminal complaint filed in Metropolitan Court:

Officers served a warrant around 4 p.m. at Chavez’s home in the 500 block of Madeira SE, near Zuni and San Mateo, and detained Chavez. Inside the home they found 33 grams of heroin, 35 grams of fentanyl and 18 grams of methadone along with smaller amounts of PCP, meth and marijuana.

Officers also seized 18 guns — some with serial numbers ground down and at least three that were stolen — more than $11,000 in cash, a Rolex watch and several different forms of identification, including passports, drivers licenses and a Los Lunas Police sergeant badge that were believed to be stolen.

Chavez’s father, Dennis Chavez, declined to comment on the charges against his son.

“To tell you the truth I haven’t seen that guy in over a year so I don’t really know what he’s up to,” he said.

Chavez was last arrested in 2016 on several violent felonies, including kidnapping, false imprisonment and six counts of aggravated battery against a household member in the brutal beating of his wife.

Officer responded to the Mountain Run Shopping Center after Chavez’s battered wife ran inside the Smith’s grocery to hide from him. The woman told police Chavez bound her inside his van and told her to write a suicide note — which she refused to do — before choking her to unconsciousness repeatedly and bashing her head against the concrete.

The 2nd Judicial District Attorney’s Office dismissed the case in January 2017, declaring it to be “in the interests of justice.”


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