3 arrested after Lake County police dog finds 5 pounds of meth during traffic stop

  • It was Lake County Sheriff's police dog Duke sniffing air around a stopped vehicle that enabled sheriff's deputies to search the trunk, finding a large quantity of drugs as well as a stolen firearm and bill counter, the sheriff's office said in a news release.

    It was Lake County Sheriff's police dog Duke sniffing air around a stopped vehicle that enabled sheriff's deputies to search the trunk, finding a large quantity of drugs as well as a stolen firearm and bill counter, the sheriff's office said in a news release. Courtesy of Lake County Sheriff's Office

  • Brandon Hidalgo-Flores, 23, of Chicago faces charges related to the manufacturing/delivery of cocaine and heroin, manufacturing of methamphetamine, and possession of various drugs.

    Brandon Hidalgo-Flores, 23, of Chicago faces charges related to the manufacturing/delivery of cocaine and heroin, manufacturing of methamphetamine, and possession of various drugs.

  • Jose Lopez-Arellanes, 52, who has no permanent address, faces charges related to the manufacturing/delivery of cocaine and heroin, manufacturing of methamphetamine, possession of various drugs and obstructing justice.

    Jose Lopez-Arellanes, 52, who has no permanent address, faces charges related to the manufacturing/delivery of cocaine and heroin, manufacturing of methamphetamine, possession of various drugs and obstructing justice.

  • Efren Valadez, 38, of Chicago faces charges related to the manufacturing/delivery of cocaine and heroin, manufacturing of methamphetamine, possession of various drugs and felon in possession of a stolen firearm.

    Efren Valadez, 38, of Chicago faces charges related to the manufacturing/delivery of cocaine and heroin, manufacturing of methamphetamine, possession of various drugs and felon in possession of a stolen firearm.

 
Daily Herald report
Updated 8/28/2020 6:01 PM

Lake County Sheriff's Police have arrested three people on multiple drug charges after a police dog helped find a large cache of drugs in the trunk of a vehicle following a traffic stop, police said.

About 2 p.m. Tuesday, a deputy conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle at Wadsworth Road and Green Bay Road in Beach Park for a traffic infraction, police said in a news release. Police had the dog, Duke, sniff the air around the vehicle, which indicated there was contraband in the trunk.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Sheriff's deputies then searched the trunk and located five pounds of methamphetamine, more than 700 grams of cocaine and over 20 grams of heroin, as well as a stolen firearm and a money counting machine, according to the news release.

Those arrested were the driver, Brandon Hidalgo-Flores, 23, and passenger Efren Valadez, 38, both of the 5000 block of South California Avenue, Chicago, and passenger Jose Lopez-Arellanes, 52, who has no permanent address, police said.

The Lake County Sheriff's Office Special Investigations Group then obtained information indicating more drugs were at an apartment in the 1900 block of Drake Avenue, Chicago, and a search warrant was obtained, according to the release.

Working with Chicago police, sheriff's detectives seized almost two more pounds of methamphetamine, more than 250 grams of heroin, more than 40 grams of cocaine, oxycodone pills, morphine pills, another firearm, and a device commonly used to divide drugs and repackage them in kilogram bricks, police said.

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The three men are being held in the Lake County jail in lieu of $500,000 bail each.

Lopez-Arellanes faces charges related to the manufacturing/delivery of cocaine and heroin, manufacturing of methamphetamine, possession of various drugs and obstructing justice. He is due in court Sept. 1.

Valadez faces charges related to the manufacturing/delivery of cocaine and heroin, manufacturing of methamphetamine, possession of various drugs and felon in possession of a stolen firearm. He is due in court on Sept. 2.

Hidalgo-Flores faces charges related to the manufacturing/delivery of cocaine and heroin, manufacturing of methamphetamine, and possession of various drugs. He is due in court on Aug. 31.

"I am extremely proud of our deputies and the members of our Special Investigations Group," Lake County Sheriff John Idleburg said.

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