Police arrested a Palos Verdes Estates man, recovered five guns and thousands of rounds of ammunition, and seized plastic bags containing heroin and methamphetamine during a narcotics operation last week.
Brent Leslie, 47, who lives in the Lunada Bay area, was arrested Jan. 23 during an investigation that began when police officers noticed an unusual increase in car traffic coming to and going from his residence, which is often an indicator of drug dealing, police said.
Police also suspected Leslie — who had been arrested by Palos Verdes Estates police officers seven times for drug violations, warrants and a traffic offense — was selling guns, authorities said.
On Jan. 23, Leslie agreed to meet at a Redondo Beach hotel with potential customers that actually were undercover police detectives. When he arrived, the officers searched his car and discovered 13 small plastic bags containing 22 grams of methamphetamine and 6 grams of heroin.
Leslie was arrested on suspicion of possession for sale of controlled substances and booked at the Redondo Beach police station.
Investigators then searched his house, where they found five unsecured firearms. One had been reported stolen and the other four were unregistered. Four of the guns were loaded, police said.
In addition, police seized a silencer, high-capacity magazines, and more than 2,000 rounds of ammunition, including tracer and armor-piercing ammunition for a large-caliber rifle.
Police also found several small plastic bags and two scales that often are used in drug sales.
The District Attorney’s Office filed six felony counts against Leslie: two counts of possession for sale of a controlled substance, two counts of possession of a firearm by a felon, one count of unlawful possession of ammunition and one count of possession of a silencer.
Police reports will be sent to Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives investigators for potential federal charges.
Jail records show Leslie made an appearance in Torrance court on Jan. 25. He was held in county jail on $130,000 bail and is scheduled to return to court on Feb. 9.
Third suspect charged in dog walker burglary case
A third person has been charged in connection with a burglary at a Palos Verdes Estates home that was committed after the owner hired a dog walker from an online site, police said Jan. 26.
George Herrera Jr., 27, of Los Angeles, who was in custody on an unrelated case, was charged Monday in connection with the Aug. 5 crime in the 3600 block of Palos Verdes Drive North, police said in a post on Facebook.
The dog walker, Nephi Henderson, 36, of Hermosa Beach, was caught on security camera footage entering the victim’s home and stealing property with Zulma Lourdes Farias, 20, also of Hermosa Beach, prosecutors said..
Henderson was sentenced Dec. 21 to two years in state prison after pleading no contest to burglary.
Prosecutors said Henderson used a key given to him by the victim to enter the house.
Farias pleaded guilty to one count of first-degree residential burglary. She was sentenced to three years formal probation.
Police are looking for one more suspect.
San Pedro man charged in home-invasion robbery
A San Pedro man was charged Jan. 18 with a home-invasion robbery that victimized a 19-year-old Rancho Palos Verdes man who was tied up and left in his bathtub for nine to 10 hours, deputies said.
Maurice Taylor, 30, faces counts of robbery, burglary, mayhem, false imprisonment, auto theft and making criminal threats. Arrested Jan. 16, he pleaded not guilty during an appearance at a Torrance court. Judge Thomas Sokolov ordered him held on $1 million bail and scheduled him to return to court on Feb. 1.
A 16-year-old girl also was arrested in connection with the Dec. 9 crime.
The victim, who lives with his father, was home alone when two people, one armed with a gun, entered the house in the 28000 block of Santona Drive about 9 p.m. They tied up the victim, put him in the bathtub, took some Gucci shoes and $40 to $50 in cash and fled in a Porsche Cayman stolen from the garage.
The victim’s father returned home Saturday, noticed the garage door was open and the car was missing. He found his son in the bathtub.
Deputies said the victim was targeted.