Stolen vehicle report leads to crystal meth seizure

- The house on West Sycamore Rd in Fresno looks quiet and innocent. Horses graze peacefully out front, but the two men who were staying here were anything but peaceful says Ft. Bend County Sheriff Troy Nehls.

“We have a lot of people from outside Ft. Bend committing crimes in Ft. Bend County,” Sheriff Nehls said.

According to investigators these two people from outside Ft. Bend County were committing very serious crimes. Running crystal meth and possessing illegal guns.

Deputies say they found this massive stash when they went to the home investigating a report of  stolen truck.

After deputies arrested 40-year-old Jose Pineda and 17-year-old Samuel Maciel, both from Mexico, they got lucky. They spotted the drugs in the garage. It turns out it was 8 kilos of meth with a street value of $400,000.

Investigators say drug runners make meth in Mexico because the ingredients are easier to get there.

“They take the finished product and dissolve it in a liquid, in this case diesel. They do it for smuggling purposes to transport it from one place to another. They bring it to a conversion lab where they cook it off,”  said Captain Joshua Dale of the drug task force.

He says this house was a conversion lab. But it wasn't just the drugs. They found a large number of guns--many of them stolen and some of them fully automatic. All of them were loaded.  They were stashed everywhere through the property for easy access.  All of this was just yards away from a daycare on one side and a church on the other. The sheriff says they got doubly lucky.

“God forbid a deputy would've walked  up on this house. They would’ve had access to these weapons. These weapons were inside the house. When we approached they were standing outside. Thank goodness. The Lord was with the deputies that showed up that day.”

Both men are in the Ft. Bend County jail with ICE holds placed on them.

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