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An FBI raid of two Albuquerque area homes on Thursday led to the discovery of around 100,000 fentanyl pills, 16 pounds of methamphetamine, $12,000 in cash, three semi-automatic rifles, eight handguns and a gold-plated money counter.
Jerry J. Bezie, 34, is charged with possession of a firearm and three counts of drug trafficking and Julian A. Leyba, 37, is charged with receiving stolen property and possession of a firearm.
Both men were arrested Thursday and booked into the Metropolitan Detention Center. Prosecutors filed a pretrial detention motion for Bezie, who has a history of drug trafficking charges.
“(Bezie) was found to be in possession of an incredible amount of drugs,” according to the motion. “It is clear that the law against trafficking means nothing to (Bezie).”
Agents said Bezie and Leyba were fentanyl dealers and TCK gang members who have been found guilty of charges including drug trafficking, drug possession and other charges, according to a search warrant affidavit filed in U.S. District Court.
Agents said an informant reportedly told the FBI in November that Leyba was selling “large quantities” of fentanyl pills, meth and guns to motel tenants near Coors and Iliff.
Then, in December, another informant told agents Bezie and Leyba sold a “significant” amount of fentanyl each week in Albuquerque, according to the federal affidavit. Agents found photos on Bezie’s social media of him wearing “expensive” jewelry – like a diamond-encrusted state of New Mexico pendant – and going on trips out of state, smiling and bejeweled in the stands at a San Francisco 49ers game.
Agents said a third informant, who has been paid $17,000 by authorities for assistance, told them Bezie was selling fentanyl to other Albuquerque dealers for them to sell along Central this month.
The informant reportedly told agents that dealers would go to Bezie’s house to pick up the pills.
On Thursday authorities made their move around 6 a.m.
With the help of State Police, federal agents conducted a raid at Bezie’s home at 1812 Del Norte SE on Thursday, according to a criminal complaint filed in District Court.
Agents found a large amount of meth, fentanyl pills, $12,000 in cash, several guns and ammunition, according to a search warrant return filed in U.S. District Court. Agents also found a gold-plated money counter, two bulletproof vests and a Hummer H2 among other off-road vehicles.
Next, agents said they raided Leyba’s home at 324 General Chennault NE around 7 a.m. and found several more guns, ammunition, two bulletproof vests and one grenade fragment vest.