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Task force agents take potential dealer off the street

PIPESTONE -- In arresting a man after he left the house of a suspected drug dealer, the Buffalo Ridge Drug Task Force has presumably kept another potential dealer off the streets in Pipestone.

Miguel De Lira Esquivel told authorities he had planned to divide the methamphetamine he had purchased into smaller quantities and sell it so he could make money to purchase more meth.

Esquivel, 42, of Pipestone, was stopped last week for driving without a license.

He had been observed leaving a residence under surveillance for drug activity, then had stopped at his own residence.

Esquivel allegedly gave authorities consent to search his apartment, stating there were no drugs in his residence. Yet immediately after an agent entered the house, a baggie containing meth was found.

During the search, more than 13 grams of meth were recovered, along with a pen straw, a glass pipe and numerous small baggies.

Esquivel allegedly told authorities he had purchased the meth from the residence the agents had been watching, and he was to pay $1,200 for the meth the following day.

Several drug task force agents and a special agent with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) then executed a search warrant on the suspected residence on Sixth Avenue.

Lynda Rae Rich, 51, and Marcelino Galvaz Placencia, 49, were both taken into custody.

During the search, agents found a small safe in an upstairs bedroom.

The safe contained more than 50 grams of meth.

During questioning, Placencia allegedly stated he had lived with Rich for seven years or more, and she had asked him to place the meth in the safe.

Rich declined to give a statement.

All three are facing first-degree controlled substance felony charges.