Drug charges dropped
by Joel Danoy
Jan 02, 2013 | 4051 views | 8 8 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
MANTECA — Four Tracy men, who were arrested in November on various drug offenses, had all charges against them dropped in San Joaquin County Superior Court on Wednesday, Jan. 2.

Rodrigo Velarde, 35, Arturo Alvarez, 35, Jose Cabral, 28, and Jose Meza, 32, were all charged with possession of a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance for sale.

Velarde also faced charges of being armed with a firearm, receiving stolen property, possession of a firearm as a narcotics addict, and being armed during a criminal act.

Cabral and Meza appeared in court free on bail, while Alvarez and Velarde were brought to the court from the San Joaquin County Jail in French Camp, where they’ve been held since being arrested Nov. 30.

Deputy District Attorney Robert Baysinger told the court that the district attorney’s office is dropping all charges against the men because of insufficient evidence.

Judge Ron A. Northup formally dismissed the case and ordered that Velarde be released from jail and bail be removed for Cabral and Meza.

Alvarez will not be released from jail, because he has an unrelated misdemeanor charge for allegedly driving under the influence. Northup transferred that case to a different court.

U.S. Border Patrol has also placed a hold on Alvarez, which will keep him in jail.

The men were arrested by Drug Enforcement Administration officers during a warranted federal search at a house on the 11600 block of Larch Road at 6 a.m. Nov. 30.

• Contact Joel Danoy at 830-4229 or jdanoy@tracypress.com.

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January 03, 2013
"Velarde also faced charges of being armed with a firearm, receiving stolen property, possession of a firearm as a narcotics addict, and being armed during a criminal act."

Seems like that evidence is incontravertable (is that a word?). If he was a felon armed with a gun it should be a cut and dried case. Does he get his gun back too?
January 02, 2013
Sounds like the battle of who's is bigger.

A DEA (Feds) search warrant executed in the County, then filed by the Feds in the County for the State to try. Who's on first? What??? Dismissed.
January 03, 2013
Actually, that's not quite the way it works. The US Attorney is the one that would prosecute the case if it was a Federal Case. In order to be prosecuted federally the case needs to meet their criteria. If it doesn't, then it is offered back to the local District Attorney to prosecute, which sounds like what happened in this case. And it's also possible that the District Attorney has dropped the charges now because the US Attorney wants the case back. So they may have been idicted by a Federal Grand Jury and as the walked out of the jail the US Marshal was there waiting to pick them up.
January 02, 2013
January 02, 2013
X2........... What's the point.......
January 03, 2013
That would be great if the US Attorney was going to pick the case up, However these fools were all but one released from custody, It seems to me if the US attorney was going to take the case, these idiots wouldnt have been released. Now if the US attorney wishes to take the case he must re-file and try to locate the suspects....again. I'm sure they are all at home, waiting for a phone call or letter from our government asking them to let us prosicute them again.

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