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Sun, Sept. 22

PANT arrests 8 Paulden residents in drug raid

Eight Paulden residents went to jail Tuesday after an early-morning drug bust involving the search of eight different homes in Paulden.

Police do not know yet if the eight arrests are connected in any way.

Law enforcement narcotics teams and other agencies arrested the following people on various drug-related charges, from possession of chemicals for the manufacture of dangerous drugs, to possession of dangerous drugs for sale, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia and others – Carmen Cervantes, 24, David Earl Parsons, 38, Raul Cervantez-Armenta, 31, Jose Luis Figueroa, 38, David Mejia Ponce, 35, Francisco Javier Castelum-Rivera, 34, Mario Estrada Hernandez, 26, and Gerardo Rivera-Castelum, 30.

Police confiscated an estimated $3,000 in cash, two pounds of methamphetamine, two pounds of marijuana, drug packing material, scales and other drug paraphernalia.

All charges are pending with the Yavapai County Attorney's office.

The Prescott Area Narcotics Team (PANT), three other law enforcement agencies from the Prescott area and two from other counties in Arizona joined forces to serve multiple search warrants that PANT prepared.

PANT received information on which to base the search warrants from tips from concerned citizens and from police informants, according to Yavapai County Sheriff's Office Public Information Officer Sharon Wachter.

PANT asked for help from other agencies because of the size of the bust. The agencies included the SWAT teams from Yavapai County Sheriff's Office (YCSO) and Prescott Police Department, Department of Public Safety (DPS) Special Operations Units, TASK forces from Mohave and Gila County gang and narcotics teams, and canine units from YCSO and DPS.

The "proposed charges," as Deputy County Attorney Steve Young referred to them as at this point, include: Cervantes — possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia; Parsons — possession of chemicals for the manufacturing of dangerous drugs, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia; Cervantez-Armenta — possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia; Figueroa — possession of dangerous drugs and possession of drug paraphernalia; and Ponce — possession of dangerous drugs for sale and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Others are Castelum-Rivera — two counts of sale of dangerous drugs; Hernandez — possession of marijuana for sale, possession of a firearm during a drug offense and possession of drug paraphernalia; and Rivera-Castelum — possession of dangerous drugs for sale, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

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