Orange County District Attorney
Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney
401 Civic Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701
For Immediate Release
Susan Kang Schroeder
DRUG DEALER SENTENCED TO 14 YEARS IN PRISON FOR POSSESSING OVER 90 POUNDS OF HEROIN FOR SALE IN HIDDEN CAR COMPARTMENTS
SANTA ANA – A drug dealer has been sentenced to 14 years in state prison for possessing over 90 pounds of heroin hidden in false compartments of a car in an Anaheim garage. Gerardo Medina Hernandez, 26, Anaheim, was sentenced after pleading guilty yesterday, Sept. 29, 2010, to one felony count of possession for sale of a controlled substance with a sentencing enhancement for possessing heroin exceeding 10 kilograms in weight.
On April 4, 2009, Hernandez was observed by police officers suspiciously entering and exiting an Anaheim apartment and the corresponding detached garage on Lincoln Avenue. While inside the garage, Hernandez dismantled a Volkswagen Toureg with several false compartments containing over 90 pounds of heroin. The heroin has an estimated street value of $10 million.
After leaving the garage, Hernandez went to a nearby Target store. Upon leaving the store, he was contacted by officers who asked the defendant what he had been doing. Hernandez responded, “Bad things.” When asked by the officers what was inside the garage, Hernandez replied, “Negra,” a Spanish slang term for heroin.
In a subsequent search of the garage, narcotics officers discovered the heroin, some of which was still in the car. The rest had been removed from the vehicle and was lying on the floor or had been packed into coolers. Hernandez was arrested at the scene. At the time of his arrest, Hernandez had been using the apartment to store narcotics and had no furniture inside except for from some air mattresses and a television.
Deputy District Attorney Ben Masangkay of the Major Narcotics Unit prosecuted this case.