Meth Conversion Lab Busted in Salinas
March 14, 2012
Ricardo Escamilla, 46, was arrested March 13 on multiple drugs charges involving possession of methamphetamine for sale, possession of cocaine for sale and operating a meth lab after management at the Laurel Inn Motel reported a possible drug sighting in a room.
Salinas police officers responded to the motel on West Laurel drive on Tuesday morning and viewed photos taken by employees that displayed possible illegal drugs. The Violent Crimes and Narcotics Task Force (VCNTF) was called in to assist and recovered over a half-pound of methamphetamine—some converted to Crystal Meth—and a half- pound of cocaine. They also seized over $2,200 in cash.
Escamilla had rented two rooms, which he was using as low-tech lab to convert powdered methamphetamine into a more pure, crystal form, police say.
According to Salinas police Sgt. Matt Maldonado, Escamilla admitted this was his first time trying convert, but this batch had not been as successful as he had hoped.
The VCNTF also confiscated drug paraphernalia, which included a cooking pot, burner and Pyrex dishes.
This was the first conversion lab bust of the 2012.