Pictured: Sheriff Oscar Lopez explains the bust that took place just after midnight Friday that netted the Jim Wells County Task Force weapons, cocaine, and more than $5,000 in cash. OFELIA GARCIA HUNTER

Firearms and cash also found

Ofelia Garcia Hunter, Alice Echo-News Journal

A "no knock" search warrant on the 1100 block of Araiza Street netted the Jim Wells County Task Force weapons, drugs, more than $5,000 and a man behind bars, officials said.

Juan Sanchez Jr., 26, was arrested on possession of a controlled substance and could face additional charges of possession of firearms. Sanchez was transported to the Jim Wells County Justice Center and has a bond of $10,000.

"Apparently this young man was selling to persons in the city and users," Jim Wells County Sheriff Oscar Lopez said.

According to Lopez, the search warrant was executed at 12:26 a.m. Friday with task force officials that included officers with the Alice, Premont, Orange Grove police departments along with the sheriff's department. After several hours of searching, the task force recovered a 9-millimeter assault rifle and three handguns—a nine-millimeter, .40 caliber and a 380 caliber, officials said. They also discovered about four grams of cocaine, wrapped in ready-to-sell 15 plastic baggies worth at least $3,000, and $5,747 in increments of bills from 100s, 50s, 20s, 10s and ones.

"I think it's a plus for the community," Lopez said. "It tells the community that we are working together."

Lopez said he was glad that the high-powered guns were taken off the streets.

"A person that's dealing in drugs has to protect himself and he uses (the guns) out of concern that someone else can steal the dope from him or take away his money."

Lopez said the investigation continues and possibly more arrests in the near future.

"We are very fortunate to have (all law enforcement) officers working on this everyday," he said.