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Heroin Dealer Suspect Sold Drugs From Mexican Market

Woman arrested for allegedly selling drugs in Sarasota's La Universal Carniceria and from her home.

A woman suspected of selling heroin in Sarasota was arrested Thursday in Bradenton, according to the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office

Demares Beatrice Castillo-Isa, 57, also known as Lourdes Ortiz Canuelas, is being held in Sarasota County Jail without bound after an operation by the sheriff's office and U.S. Marshals, according to the sheriff's office.

She has been wanted since August of last year for her role in a large heroin trafficking operation. The suspect is charged with Conspiracy to Traffic Heroin, and was arrested on similar charges in Boston in 2009.

According to a Sarasota County Sheriff's Office report, the suspect was selling "significant quantities" of drugs from her former house, at 3100 Hawthorne St., Lot 69 as well as from a Mexican market, La Universal Carniceria, 2862 Ringling Blvd. She was arrested Thursday night in the 2100 block of 34th Street West in Bradenton.

Authorities from the sheriff's office were first tipped off in January 2012 about the possible heroin drug dealing ring, according to the affidavit. A confidential informant to the sheriff's office told detectives how the suspect worked at the Mexican market and told detectives that the market was used to sell heroin, according to the affidavit.

The informat was then used to obtain heroin and one cooperating witness obtained more than 500 grams of heroin from Castillo-Isa for about $20,000 over a period of several months, according to the sheriff's office.

The investigation led to several other arrests during the year including one man, Arlin Troncoso Pena, who was held by the Department of Homeland Security for having multiple false identities and immigration issues, and also had an outstanding warrant for failure to appear in Osceola County court for heroin traffic charges, according to the affidavit. He also faces similar charges in Sarasota County after his arrest in June.

Undercover detectives from the Sheriff’s Office and the Sarasota Police Department obtained heroin from her and two co-defendants, who were arrested in June and now face federal charges in the case. 

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