Courts

Nuestra Familia commander charged with selling kilo of meth to FBI source

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A man who prosecutors say is linked to a sprawling criminal organization that oversees dozens of Hispanic street gangs in Northern California has been indicted on charges of selling a kilo of meth to an FBI source in 2020.

Elias “Ghost” Silva, 42, was indicted last week on one charge of distribution of methamphetamine, which carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years behind bars and a max of life. He can also be fined up to $10 million.

Silva allegedly serves as the Sacramento Regiment commander for the Nuestra Familia and is also a suspected Varrio Franklin Blvd Norteño. Court records show he has a short rap sheet with prior convictions in 2005 and 2007 for possession of a controlled substance for sale and felony assault with a deadly weapon.

According to court documents, Silva is charged in relation to one controlled purchase in February 2020 of a little over one kilogram of methamphetamine. The alleged deal took place at the Jimboy’s Tacos on Wisconsin Avenue.

Silva and the FBI source communicated through “Wickr Me” to arrange the deal, which took place shortly after 8:00 PM when Silva arrived at the restaurant in a Nissan Maxima. The FBI source walked up to the vehicle, got in the passenger seat, and was greeted with a large bag of methamphetamine dropped into his lap. The source paid $2660 for the narcotics.

Before leaving the car, Silva is said to have plugged another drug he had available for sale – black tar heroin cut with fentanyl for $18,000 a kilogram. Fentanyl, used to cut drugs and increase profits, is at the center of a local epidemic of accidental overdoses. Twenty people died from the drug in Sacramento County in 2018.

He’s been ordered detained pending trial, with leg shackling, and has retained lawyer Etan Zaitsu – who is also representing the leaders of an alleged cocaine ring based out of the La Victoria supermarket.

Ethan Biando
Ethan Biando is a freelance journalist from Sacramento. His writing focuses on crime, courts, and policing. Find him on Twitter @ethanb822

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