How the DEA and Rockwall PD worked together to bust Lost Society's Fernando Rosales, or "What the hell were you going to do with seven pounds of meth?"

The mid-October arrest of Fernando Rosales and subsequent raid on the Lost Society bar was not the result of a random traffic stop in Rockwall, Texas, but, according to Rockwall PD documents, the final piece of an ongoing narcotics investigation that was trying to interrupt the delivery of nearly 3 kilograms (more than 6 pounds) of illegal drugs.

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According to the Affidavit for a Search Warrant (below), filed in Dallas County just hours after Fernando Rosales was arrested in Rockwall County, authorities were following Fernando Rosales that morning from Lost Society's back alley to Rockwall because a reliable Drug Enforcement Administration informer told them Fernando Rosales was delivering methamphetamine to a location in Rockwall, Texas. Fernando Rosales was under surveillance from the moment he left Lost Society at 939am on October 11, where he loaded a brown carton into his car, until he was stopped for a traffic violation less than one hour later.

On October 11, 2011, Rockwall Narcotics Detectives, working on information gained from a reliable and corroborated DEA informant, had knowledge of a 3 kilogram methamphetamine delivery to a location in Rockwall, Texas. Rockwall Narcotics Detectives set up surveillance on the Lost Society club located at 2008 Greenville Avenue, Dallas, Texas at 9:39am.

 

Affidavit for Search Warrant / Rockwall PD / Lost Society- 10-11-11

At that time Rockwall Narcotics Detective … observed a Charcoal Gray 2011 Toyota Camry bearing Texas License XXX-XXX at the rear of the business near the back door in the alleyway.

At 9:50am, …Detective … observed a subject that had been identified as Fernando Rosales exit the rear of the business carrying a brown cardboard box with a white label and placed it in the trunk of the Toyota Camry. Fernando Rosales then entered the driver's side of the Toyota and left the location travelling through the alley onto Prospect Avenue. (Fernando Rosales) was the sole occupant of the vehicle. Mr. Rosales tumed onto Matilda Street and then onto Oram Street.

Mr. Rosales then turned from Oram Street onto Greenville Avenue and then travelled south to Munger Blvd and finally onto east bound lH-30 toward Rockwall, Texas.

Detective … was continually within three car lengths of the Toyota during the entire trip. Fernando Rosales made the trip east bound on lH-30, travelling into Rockwall, Rockwall County, Texas. Mr. Rosales took the Ridge Road exit from IH-30.

At … 10:39am, the vehicle was stopped for a traffic violation in the 2500 block of Ridge Road, Rockwall, Texas, by Rockwall PD Officer … Mr. Rosales was identified with his Texas driver license #XXXXXX.

During the course of the traffic stop, Fernando Rosales refused to give his consent to a search of his vehicle. A drug-sniffing dog signaled for drugs during a perimeter walk around the car, which created probable cause for a full inspection of the vehicle.

During the contact, Officer …. asked for consent to search the vehicle and was denied by Mr. Rosales. Rockwall County Canine Officer … was called to the scene and conducted an open air perimeter search of the vehicle. The dog alerted to the presence of a controlled substance in the vehicle. A subsequent search of Mr. Rosales' Toyota Camry revealed a brown cardboard box with a white label, in the trunk which contained three zip-lock plastic bags of a white powdery substance believed to be methamphetamine. Detective … confirmed that this was the same box he had observed Mr. Rosales place in the trunk on the vehicle at the rear of the Lost Society club earlier

Officers seized the bev-nap carton, which contained nearly three kilograms (about seven pounds) of a drug suspected of being methamphetamine in three large plastic bags, and $4,734 in currency in two bank bags.

The arrest and seized drugs were the basis for a warrant request submitted to a Dallas County Magistrate to search Lost Society that same afternoon. There is no prohibition on police officers from one Texas county or city acting on a warrant to search a location in another Texas county or city, provided they make a courtesy call to the local law enforcement officers, usually to request back-up and security.

According to the Affidavit for a Search Warrant, prepared by a Rockwall police officer with nearly 20 years of experience in narcotics investigations, the raid was necessary because…

B. That drug traffickers maintain books, records, receipts, notes, ledgers, and other papers relating to the transportation, ordering, sale, and distribution of controlled substances, even though such documents may be in code. That drug traffickers commonly "front" drugs (provide controlled substances on consignment) to their clients. That the aforementioned books, records, receipts, notes, ledgers, etc. are commonly maintained where the drug traffickers have ready access to them, i.e., homes, offices, automobiles;

C. That it is common for drug traffickers to secrete contraband, proceeds of drug sales and records of drug transactions, drug sources, and drug customers in secure locations within residences, offices, garages, storage buildings and safe deposit boxes for ready access and also to conceal such items from law enforcement authorities;

D. That persons involved in drug trafficking conceal caches of drugs, large amounts of currency, and other items of value and/or proceeds of drug transactions, and evidence of financial transactions relating to obtaining, transferring, secreting, or spending large sums of money made from engaging in drug trafficking activities in their residences, offices, garages, garage buildings, and automobiles;

Rockwall PD / Arrest & Incident Report / Fernando Rosales - 10.11.11 Rockwall PD

Rockwall Police conducted the raid at 3pm that same afternoon. Sources who were on the scene tell BD numerous brown bags (which were clearly filled with something heavy) were carried out of the club by police officers. Even though the DEA denies participating in the raid, people on the street told BD officers with the letters DEA printed on the backside of their safety vests were in the raiding party. The Dallas Police Department did not participate in the action, also per BD's sources.

Fernando Rosales is still in custody at the Rockwall County Jail. In addition to the charge of possessing more than 400 grams of a controlled substance in Rockwall County (the vehicle search), there are two more similar charges filed in Dallas County, with a no bond flag (meaning he can't be bailed out).

A source close to Dallas County District Attorney's staff informed BD last week they were planning to let Rockwall County have the first chance to put Fernando Rosales on trial for the drugs found in the car, followed by a trial in Dallas for the drugs found in Lost Society.

This is what two grams of methamphetamine looks like, from a seizure in last year in Anderson County (Knoxville), Tennessee. The street value at that time was $100 per gram. At that rate, the three kilograms alleged to have been found by Rockwall PD in Fernando Rosales' car was worth about $1.5 million dollars on the street.

<< This is a developing story>>

By Avi S. Adelman under Public safety , Lower Greenville