4 arrested in major heroin case

4 arrested in major heroin case (Image 1)

Four people were arrested in a major heroin case based out of the South Nashville, Brentwood and Franklin areas.

The arrests were made in the Nippers Corner area Thursday.

One of those taken into custody was 29-year-old Joel Reed. Authorities said he ingested several balloons containing 8 grams of heroin when he saw officers coming on the scene.

Reed was taken to Southern Hills Medical Center where the staff safely removed the balloons.

Officials also arrested Efrain Huerta-Lopez, 23, and Roberto Duron, 27, for reportedly distributing the heroin.

They allegedly based their operation out of the Extended Stay America Hotel on Church Street East in Brentwood.

Authorities said 33-year-old Edwin Portalatin also had a hand in the crime by making deliveries to buyers in public places like the parking lots of big box stores in Franklin, Brentwood and South Nashville.

After searching Huerta-Lopez’s hotel room, Edwin Portalatin’s home on Streamfield Court, and Duron’s residence on Westridge Court, police seized one pound of black tar heroin, $27,367 in cash, three guns, three vehicles and money transfer receipts.

Officials believe the heroin was produced in Mexico and sent to Tennessee.

Portalatin is being held in lieu of $175,000 bond, Huerta-Lopez at $150,000 bond and Duron at $80,000 bond.

Reed was released from jail after posting $50,000 bond.

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