35-year-old Sulignaa Phommachanh and 28-year-old Javier Gastelum Cisnero, both of Bakersfield California, were arrested Monday (November 13) by Catawba County Sheriff's Officers. They're each charged with two felony counts of trafficking in marijuana and one felony count of possession with intent to sell and deliver marijuana.
The suspects were arrested after a room at a lodging establishment on 13th Avenue Drive NW was searched. The search warrant was obtained after investigators approached a vehicle in the parking lot of the hotel based on information received by the Catawba County Sheriff's Office Drug Task Force.
Officers learned that the vehicle was involved in the trafficking of illegal narcotics. The search resulted in the discovery of more than 13 pounds of marijuana. Cisnero, who was driving the vehicle, said he was staying in a room at the hotel. Phommachanh was found in the room when investigators secured it.
During the search, investigators found $34,791 in cash, a vacuum sealer, and more marijuana in the hotel room. A total of 14.58 pounds of marijuana was seized. Following their arrests, both suspects were incarcerated in the Catawba County Detention Facility under $210,000 bond apiece. They were both scheduled to make District Court appearances today (November 14). The investigation is continuing and more charges may be filed.