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Home / weapons seized

SFV man pleads guilty to dealing methamphetamine, ghost guns

A San Fernando Valley man pleaded guilty Friday to federal charges for selling about 17 pounds of methamphetamine and 89 firearms, including dozens of ghost guns, or firearms that lack serial numbers.

Julio Ernesto “Iroe” Lopez-Menendez, 27, of Reseda, pleaded guilty to one count each of distribution of methamphetamine and engaging in the business of dealing in firearms without a license, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Lopez-Menendez has been in federal custody since his arrest last April.

U.S. District Judge André Birotte Jr. scheduled a May 26 sentencing hearing, at which time Lopez-Menendez will face a sentence of up to life in federal prison, federal prosecutors said.

According to his plea agreement, from January 2022 to April 2022, Lopez-Menendez engaged in transactions in which large numbers of firearms and pound quantities of methamphetamine were sold. Many of the firearms sold were so-called ghost guns.

In one deal, Lopez-Menendez sold the buyer a dozen firearms, including 10 semi-automatic ghost gun pistols. In another transaction, Lopez-Menendez sold the same buyer nearly one pound of methamphetamine and 14 firearms, including nine semi-automatic ghost gun pistols, for $15,000.

During the final two drug deals, Lopez-Menendez sold the buyer about 9.2 pounds and 4.8 pounds of methamphetamine, according to the plea deal filed in Los Angeles federal court.

In total, Lopez-Menendez admitted to selling about 17 pounds of methamphetamine and 89 firearms — including 53 ghost guns.

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