Meth trafficking (correction) 02-19-09

Hawai’i Police Department
Criminal Investigations Division
Captain Randall Medeiros
Phone: 961-2251
February 19, 2009
Report No. C09005212

(Click photo to see larger image).
Castro mug shot Saribay mug shot Olivera mug shot
…arrested and charged in meth trafficking case

Media Release (correction)

Hawaii Police Department vice officers arrested four persons in connection with a methamphetamine trafficking investigation conducted in the Keaau area of Puna on Monday (February 16).

Thirty-four-year-old Ruel Castro of Keaau, 29-year-old Christopher Saribay of Hilo and 29-year-old Diane Blanco of Keaau were arrested on suspicion of drug possession after being contacted within a vehicle in the Keaau town area.

After a Hawaii Police Department narcotics canine alert, police served a search warrant on the vehicle. Hilo vice officers recovered 41 grams of crystal methamphetamine from the vehicle. The "ice" had a street value of approximately $8,000.

Castro, Saribay, and Blanco were charged with a variety of drug offenses including first-degree methamphetamine trafficking. Castro is being held at the Hilo cellblock in lieu of $18,000 bail. Saribay and Blanco were released after posting $9,000 and $11,000 bail, respectively.

Forty-four-year-old Wendell Olivera of Hilo was also arrested after Hilo Vice officers contacted him in his vehicle in the same area and observed a firearm within. After a narcotic canine alert on Olivera’s vehicle and a subsequent search warrant, Hilo vice officers recovered 2.5 grams of crystal methamphetamine, a shotgun and a semi-automatic handgun.

Olivera, a convicted felon, was arrested and charged with numerous firearms offenses (including ownership of a firearm prohibited) as well as second-degree methamphetamine trafficking [corrected offense] and numerous other drug offenses.

Olivera is currently being held at the Hilo cellblock in lieu of $40,000 bail. Both he and Castro are scheduled for their initial court appearances this afternoon (Thursday) in South Hilo District Court.

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