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Drug fighters go online

Gregory Crofton, Tahoe Daily Tribune

South Shore’s undercover drug investigation team is using a Web site to reach out to the public.

Its new site, http://www.slednet.org, went online last week. SLEDNET stands for South Lake El Dorado Narcotics Enforcement Team. The site contains a list of Tahoe’s Most Wanted fugitives, provides facts about the agency and creates another venue to report illegal drug activity.

“It’s geared as a tool for the community to help work with SLEDNET to combat the drug problem, also as an information source for parents and other concerned citizens,” said Chris Elliott, team commander. “There are many myths about what we do and I hope this Web site can help dispel many of them.”

SLEDNET, formed in 1990, is supervised by Elliott, an employee at the California Department of Justice. Officers who work on the team are on loan, typically for about three years, from South Shore law enforcement agencies. South Lake Tahoe Police Department, El Dorado and Douglas County sheriff’s departments, Nevada Department of Public Safety Investigation Division and the California Highway Patrol all contribute staff to the team.

The Web site has links to Secret Witness, FBI Most Wanted, the Drug Enforcement Administration and provides information about “drugs of concern,” such as heroin, methamphetamine, LSD, and cocaine. The site also provides a forum to report drug activity.

— Tahoe’s Most Wanted

warning: Do not attempt to apprehend the people listed below. Instead, notify law enforcement of their location.

— Jose Rodriguez-Perez

Rodriguez-Perez, a 23-year-old Hispanic, is accused of offering a girl cocaine and alcohol that led to her death. Investigators believe Rodriguez-Perez hosted a party in March 2001 attended by Claudia Torres, an 11-year-old from South Lake Tahoe. Rodriguez is believed to be in Mexico.

–Ismael Novoa

Novoa, a 32-year-old Mexican, lived at Blackwood Road and Spruce Avenue before he fled South Lake Tahoe. His girlfriend and her child were found at his apartment, as was almost half-an-ounce of cocaine packaged for sale and two handguns, one of which was reported stolen in Los Angeles. Novoa’s girlfriend recently was arraigned on suspicion of child endangerment and charges related to the cocaine.

— Jorge Lopez

Lopez, a 28-year-old Hispanic, has a warrant for his arrest issued by Alpine Superior Court for possession of more than one ounce of marijuana with intent to distribute. A California Highway Patrol officer arrested him. Investigators believe he is in Hawaii.

— Efra’n Campos Villa-Gomez

Villa-Gomez, a 28-year-old Hispanic, is wanted for trafficking methamphetamine. He is believed to be in Mexico. He is wanted in connection to a bust SLEDNET made in July 2000 that led to the arrest of 21 people. The investigation involved wiretapping. Villa-Gomez is the only person involved in the meth ring still wanted by law enforcement. The other suspect at large, Alfredo Lopez-Garcia, was apprehended in Las Vegas on April 23.

— Teerdade Azari (mug avail)

Azari, a 32-year-old Caucasian, failed to appear in court March 20, 2002. He is wanted trafficking a quarter-pound of methamphetamine. Azari kept a Truckee address.


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