LYNN HAVEN, Fla. (WMBB) — Bay County Sheriff Tommy Ford said Tuesday that his office seized 18 pounds of meth during a narcotics operation.
The investigation into a local drug ring began in early 2019 and the first seizure of what would become 18 pounds of meth, $75,000 and 13 guns took place in November.
Investigators named Ulises ‘Angel’ Perez as the drug ring’s leader and said he was deported from the United States four times on previous drug charges.
“The damage that the addiction crisis and that these drugs do in our community goes far beyond the effect that it has on the individual,” said Sheriff Tommy Ford. “It destroys their families, there are generational issues that they have with their children. It really tears at the fabric of our society. So, we are committed to taking these drugs off the street.”
Perez was reportedly distributing meth to at least nine people in the area. Those individuals are below.
Each person has been arrested except for Alexander Morrison. Anyone with any information on his whereabouts is asked to call the sheriff’s office, (850)747-4700 or CrimeStoppers at 785-TIPS.
Perez was taken into custody on January 28.
The sheriff’s office also released a timeline of the investigation:
Early 2019: Emily Persilver is interdicted traveling from Atlanta and arrested. Over a pound of methamphetamine is seized. Information is developed that there is a Hispanic male known as “Angel” supplying a significant amount of methamphetamine to dealers in Bay County. Certain individuals are targeted and questioned, and informants are developed. Surveillance begins and is done over several months.
Nov. 2019: Scott Burkett is arrested and over a pound of meth is seized, along with a sawed-off shotgun. Burkett was directly supplied by “Angel”.
Dec. 2019: Joseph Thomas is arrested in December of 2019 and over a pound of methamphetamine is seized. The meth was supplied by “Angel”.
Jan. 2020: “Angel” is identified as Ulises “Angel” Perez. Perez lives in Atlanta and has ties to Bay County. It is eventually learned Angel, from Mexico, is not a US citizen and has been deported four times.
Jan. 23, 2020: Ten ounces of methamphetamine is recovered during a search warrant at a home on Bumby Road in Bay County. It is believed to have been supplied by Angel Perez.
Jan. 24, 2020: Officers conduct surveillance and observe Angel Perez give a number of narcotics to another individual in Bay County. The narcotics are later recovered and are found to be one kilo of methamphetamine (about 2 pounds).
Jan. 28, 2020: Angel Perez is in the local area and is taken into custody. $12,500 in US currency is seized, packaged into $1000 increments and bound with rubber bands-known as “dealer rolls”. During the interview, Angel Perez states he knows where there are four kilos of Methamphetamine in Bay County. He attempts to bargain with officers by offering to tell them the location of the kilos in exchange for his freedom. His offer is declined.
Jan. 29, 2020: Contact is made with Matt Shavers at a residence on Panama City Beach. Shavers gives consent to search and 22 ounces, about a half a kilo, of methamphetamine is located and seized. Shavers’ states Angel Perez was his source for the methamphetamine.
Working with federal law enforcement in the Atlanta area, information is developed that leads to the seizure of 3.25 lbs. of methamphetamine and two firearms: a rifle and a revolver-from the Atlanta area.
Jan. 30, 2020: Additional interviews are done with Angel Perez. Freddie Knowles is identified as a cohort of Perez.
Jan. 31, 2020: A search warrant is executed at the home of Knowles off Northridge Rd. in Bay County. Four kilos of methamphetamine were found in a PVC pipe, buried under a dirt bike. Firearms are also seized (rifle, shotgun, and handguns) as well as $3500 in US currency.
Ford says this investigation is ongoing and they expect more arrests to be made.