January 11, 2013

Man arrested for stash of pirated DVDS

A 31-year-old man's in custody on a deluge of possible charges, including piracy and illegal gun possession after Merced police followed up on a accusation of unlawful sex with a minor.

Rodolfo Montes was taken into custody around noon Wednesday after police served a search warrant at his residence in the 700 block of Chandon Drive, according to Lt. Tom Trindad.

The search yielded a firearm, pirated DVDs of major movies and counterfeit professional sports apparel. Montes isn't supposed to have a firearm because he's a convicted felon, Trindad said.

Based upon the equipment found in his home along with a number of items, investigators believe Montes was involved in a small to mid-size counterfeiting operation. Police found more than 5,000 DVDs, including some titles that are still in theaters, such as "The Hobbit," "Lincoln," and "Zero Dark Thirty." Police have contacted the Department of Justice and the Major Motion Picture Association, Trindad said.

During the search, Trindad said police also found items belonging to the 17-year-old female, who Montes is accused of having unlawful sex with. Trindad said police believe the juvenile was staying at the residence on and off.

Montes was booked into Merced County Jail. Detectives are asking anyone with any information to contact Detective Joseph Henderson at (209) 385-6847, or the department's automated tipline at (209) 385-4725. Tips are kept confidential and you can remain anonymous.

Witnesses can send information via anonymous text messages to police department by dialing “TIP411” (847411) and including the word “ComVIP” as the “keyword” in the text message.

-- Sun-Star staff

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