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Big Island drug investigation leads to charges against 8


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POSTED: Thursday, May 28, 2009

Big Island police detectives have charged eight people as a result of an investigation into drug use and distribution.

The sweep included the arrest of 13 people for 46 property offenses and nine people for drug-related offenses, police said Tuesday.

In one investigation, police discovered crystal methamphetamine and nearly $150,000 in stolen property at a home in the Orchidland Estates.

Police charged 60-year-old Lloyd Chong with drug-related charges, including methamphetamine trafficking and promotion of a dangerous drug.

Chong was being held in lieu of $36,000 bail after an initial court appearance Tuesday in South Hilo District Court.

Also charged were:

» Derek Liu, 44, of Waimea, a convicted felon charged with a firearm offense. His bail was $6,000.

» Michael Ortiz, 40, of Puna, charged with first-degree burglary, with bail set at $50,000.

» Edward Geraghty, 23, of Puna, charged with first-degree burglary, second-degree criminal property damage, two counts of second-degree theft, first-degree methamphetamine trafficking, three counts of third-degree promoting of a dangerous drug, one count of second-degree promoting of a dangerous drug, four counts regarding drug paraphernalia and a firearm offense. He is being held in lieu of $44,000 bail.

» Ernest Balai, 47, of Hilo, charged with first-degree burglary. His bail was set at $5,000.

» Christopher Asagra, 38, of Hilo, charged with second-degree theft and trespassing. His bail was set at $2,000.

» John Lesseos, 46, of Hilo, charged with first-degree burglary, five counts of unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle and 13 counts of unauthorized possession of personal information. His bail was $38,000.

» Corey Sanchez, 20, of Puna, charged with bail jumping and violating supervised release.