There are some big advantages to hiding your meth lab inside a vehicle. Just ask Walter White. His Breaking Bad crew spent five seasons evading the DEA and local cops in part by cooking crank in a dilapidated mobile home in the New Mexican wilderness. John Day wasn't quite that creative, but police ... More >>
Every Friday, Riptide brings you the most eye-catching mugshots taken the previous week (or thereabouts) in Miami-Dade County. Yes, there is some mockery of bad neck tattoos, but also adulation directed at perps who just plain look more badass than we ever will. This is the italicized intro to that ... More >>
The U.S. Coast Guard recently unveiled some new high-tech, high-speed boats and already they're showing spoils. The coast guard cutters Charles Sexton and Paul Clark last week intercepted two drug smuggling boats in the Caribbean and seized about $3 million worth of pot and cocaine. The drugs will b ... More >>
An officer on patrol in suburban Virginia Gardens last week noticed "the distinct and unique odor of unburnt cannabis" coming from a parked 2000 Mercury Grand Marquis. Like any good weed-smelling cop, he stopped to investigate. In the driver's seat, he found 23-year-old Luke Bray, a redshirt seni ... More >>
Like many families in Miami, Nelson Valeriano Rodriguez and Nelson Angel Rodriguez were running a father and son business together. Thier's just happened to be a drug ring. Miami-Dade police busted the pair yesterday after receiving an anonymous tip.
Miami-Dade Police were busy last night. Officers conducted three raids of three separate grow houses in the Redland last night and hauled off about $1 million worth of marijuana in the process.
Don Whittington charged up to a desk inside a gargantuan Fort Lauderdale warehouse built from blue corrugated metal. He was seething. "You're a bitch," he hissed at the receptionist. Then, the five-foot-11 Whittington, who was once a championship racecar driver before earning an 18-month federal pr ... More >>
Is Walter White overtaking Tony Montana as Florida's iconic drug dealing anti-hero of choice? Earlier this month police in Florida found a stuffed White doll in a car parked outside a meth house, and now another Florida man who won a fan contest to watch the series finale of Breaking Bad with the ... More >>
Life in Florida imitates art -- especially the kind of art that deals with drug dealing. Last week we noted a Miami cocaine shipping case that eerily mirrored the second season of The Wire. This week we bring you something of a real-life Breaking Bad. Well, at least it involves tons of meth and Walt ... More >>
A Miami man was caught trying to bring a green Christmas up to the folks of Pennsylvania. Randy Jesus Valdivia, a 38-year-old resident of Surfside, wasn't driving a sleigh, but instead a 2014 Dodge Caravan. On Thursday afternoon, police pulled over the vehicle for displaying "criminal activity ind ... More >>
Jimmy Dewayne Whipple made a series of unfortunate mistakes on Tuesday. First, he called his local police department to report that his gun had been stolen. That's a reasonable thing to do for most people, but less of a great idea when you're a felon who is not allowed to own a gun. Whipple may ha ... More >>
In Florida, drugs are more likely than whales to beach themselves on our shores. So it's not much of a surprise that police found 16 kilos of cocaine washed up on a St. Augustine Beach last night and are looking for more.
Sounds like someone is plagued by a serious amount of body thetans. Denise Gentile, the twin sister of David Miscavige, the top religious leader of the Church of Scientology, was arrested in St. Petersburg on marijuana charges over the weekend. Gentile is active in the church as well, and Scientol ... More >>
He may be Will Smith's brother-in-law, but Dee Lawrence Downs did not get a very warm welcome to Miami.Downs, who is married to Smith's younger sister Ellen, was arrested last month after he fell into a cocaine trafficking sting operation.
For Joleen Crisp and her 65-year-old associate Renter Pete Atwood, it's all meth all the time. Police found the duo cooking meth in a Daytona Beach Shores motel just hours before Crisp, 32, was scheduled to appear in court for previous charges on making meth.
Tampa rapper Money-Clipz has been sentenced to 30 years in federal prison for possession of over 28 grams of crack cocaine with an intent to distribute. Jeez Louise! First, they tell you that sharing is caring and then they throw you in jail for caring too much. Mixed messages, you guys. If 30 yea ... More >>
Read "Hialeah Gardens Cop Lawrence Perez Shows How Drugs Can Corrupt Police."A Hialeah Gardens Police detective who was helping his pals rip off marijuana dealers got 151 months in federal prison yesterday. Miami New Times profiled Lawrence Perez in June after a jury found him guilty of two felony c ... More >>
Federal prosecutors announced today the arrest of 13 men and women for their involvement in a massive network of marijuana grow houses in Miami.Feds say that the network was run by baby-faced con Gilberto Santiesteban Jr. and three of his brothers. According to several indictments, the family operat ... More >>
If you're going to take the risk of setting up an illegal marijuana growhouse, it's best to take just the littlest bit of caution and make sure that growhouse isn't directly next door to a school where kids as young as kindergarteners study.Three Miami men weren't so smart and set up shop right a ... More >>
Sure, John Philip Stirling may be Canadian, but he's also the most Miami-flavored drug smuggler to land in local federal court since the heyday of the Cocaine Cowboys. When he was caught at sea last week off Colombia with 800 pounds of coke, the good captain flat-out told the feds: "There's nothi ... More >>
Every Friday, Riptide brings you the most eye-catching mugshots taken the previous week (or thereabouts) in Miami-Dade County. Yes, there is some mockery of bad neck tattoos, but also adulation directed at perps who just plain look more badass than we ever will. This is the italicized intro t ... More >>
U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials say they haven't made a huge pot bust at the Port of Miami for months, but sometimes you just have to wait. Authorities report they discovered 3,837 pounds of marijuana, nearly two tons, stuffed inside shipping containers at the port last Friday.
Every Friday, Riptide brings you the most eye-catching mugshots taken the previous week (or thereabouts) in Miami-Dade County. Yes, there is some mockery of bad neck tattoos, but also adulation directed at perps who just plain look more badass than we ever will. This is the italicized intro to ... More >>
Will somebody wake him up for his mugshot please?A 50-year-old Colombian drug kingpin was fined $1 million and sentenced to 22 years in prison Wednesday by a federal judge in Miami. And that was the plea deal.Edgar Vellejo-Guarin was indicted in 2001 after Coast Guard officers discovered 4,000 ki ... More >>
Retired Gen. Rene Sanabria, who once ran Bolivia's national anti-narcotics police unit, has pleaded guilty in a Miami court to smuggling cocaine. Sanabria and his co-conspirators were arrested in March and charged with trying to sneak about 315 pounds of cocaine into the Port of Miami.
Off the hook for millions in money laundering.Happy Anniversary, Wachovia!A year after the bank admitted to laundering hundreds of millions in Mexican drug money -- and paying $160 million in fines and penalties -- the company is now off the hook for further punishment.According to the British pa ... More >>
via PlusBoliviaRene Sanabria helped smuggle 220 lbs of cocaine into Miami.From top drug cop to accused cocaine smuggler. That's the story of Retired Gen. Rene Sanabria. From 2007 to 2008 he ran Bolivia's anti-narcotics police, and since 2009 has been a top adviser to Evo Morales' Interior Minist ... More >>
Despite a triumphant concert in Miami and a Grammy win within the last few months, Buju Banton's dark days are not behind him. After an initial trial on drug charges was declared a mistrial, Banton has been found guilty of conspiring to set up a Florida cocaine deal back in 2009.
Courtesy Rochelle Desiree Mermelstein GomezLast year, New Times published a feature detailing the strange last days of Max Mermelstein, the master cocaine smuggler who turned snitch in the mid-80s and died under government protection in 2008. Among the readers: Rochelle Desiree Mermelstein ... More >>
It's already been a busy week for the drug that made Miami -- or at least for the feds' perpetual war on the white stuff. First, the DEA arrested 10 people, mostly from Miami and Hialeah, and charged them with organizing a ring shuttling coke from Juarez to South Florida.Then came word that a muc ... More >>
A handmade t-shirt displaying the group's insignia with guns we found on one possible members MySpaceThe Murda Grove Boys are not, as their name would suggest, a horror-core boy band but actually one of Miami-Dade's most violent criminal gangs. CBS4 reports that Miami Gardens police, the FBI and ... More >>
Police are after a former beauty queen who's accused of being the ringleader of a gang of pinups who also work as international drug smugglers. Angie San Clemente Valencia is a bosomy 30-year-old Colombian who's accused of paying her merry band of strumpets $5,000 for carrying pounds of blow from Me ... More >>
With indoor grow houses taking over the marijuana market, you don’t hear about people smuggling weed into the U.S. much anymore. But this past Saturday, at the Port of Miami, Immigrations and Customs Enforcement found 6,000 pounds of pot in burlap sacks, sent from Jamaica. Were talking about a str ... More >>
Robert Platshorn was the first big bust of the War on Drugs. Almost 30 years later, he's free and talking.
Florida moves into the number two spot when it comes to grow houses
Scheming snitches, dirty detectives, intrepid investigators. This ain't The Shield's Strike Team.
The feds call Rickey Brownlee one of South Florida's biggest narco-traffickers. His friends and neighbors in Opa-locka call him a valiant victim.