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Suspected Drug Dealers Arraigned For Rental Truck Full Of Pot

Two suspected drug dealers, who were allegedly caught by authorities unloading hundreds of bales of marijuana into a rental moving truck outside an Imperial Beach home, were scheduled to be arraigned today in downtown San Diego.

Eddie Martinez, 34, and Juan Carlos Rodriguez, 36, were arrested last Wednesday night outside the home in the 500 block of Seventh Street, each on five counts of possession of illegal drugs for sale.

They were arrested by undercover San Diego police narcotics detectives who were there acting on a tip, SDPD Lt. Andra Brown said.

During a search of the truck and home, police seized 1,153 pounds of marijuana, just under a pound of methamphetamine and 8.5 grams of cocaine, Brown said. The drugs' street values, respectively, were estimated at $692,000, $45,000 and $850.

"This is a big deal," the lieutenant told reporters outside downtown SDPD headquarters the next morning. "Over half a ton of marijuana is a lot of marijuana. The 449 grams of methamphetamine ... (is) significant as well. I think we got it right at the start, so there was obviously going to be a

potential for a huge distribution."

It was unclear why San Diego police were handling a narcotics investigation in Imperial Beach, which is part of the jurisdiction of the county Sheriff's Department. It may simply have been because SDPD detectives first got the information about the alleged drug activities at the Seventh Street house, Brown said.

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