A multi-agency investigation during the past six months has led to the largest brown heroin drug bust in the history of the Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Department.
Roughly three-and-a-half pounds of brown powder heroin – considered rarer in Santa Barbara County than black tar heroin – was seized during a search warrant of a residence on Vista Del Mar Drive. A half-pound of crystal methamphetamine, a sawed off shotgun, an additional weapon, and other items related to the sale of narcotics were also located. The heroin’s street value was estimated to be $158,800 while the meth was valued at $19,600.
Also inside the home was Gilbert Herrera, a 33-year-old subject who was arrested on his birthday.
Three additional search warrants were served at addresses within city limits. At one of the locations, 39-year-old suspect Joaquin Perez, was found sitting in his car nearby, allegedly with 2.5 ounces of heroin and meth packaged for sale.
Perez is being held in Santa Barbara County Jail, without bail, facing charges of possession of heroin and meth for sale, violation of parole, and transportation of heroin. Herrera is also in jail with bail at $100,000 and also faces possession of heroin and meth charges, as well as a conspiracy charge.
The investigation was a team effort of Sheriff’s narcotics detectives, the Santa Barbara and Santa Maria Police departments, and the Santa Barbara Regional Narcotic Task Force.