Arrested on old driving offense, man admits to smuggling drugs

Casey Grove

A man flying into Anchorage with a half-pound of methamphetamine and a quarter-pound of heroin on Thursday is now jailed and facing federal drug charges.

Police were waiting for Hector Hernandez, 29, when he landed at Ted Stevens International.

According to a charging document, a Drug Enforcement Administration officer in Southern California had called his counterpart in Alaska -- for reasons not clear in the charges -- and told him Hernandez was flying from San Diego to Anchorage on a one-way ticket. The Anchorage DEA officer had earlier looked up Hernandez' criminal record and learned he was wanted on a misdemeanor warrant out of the Kodiak court: driving with a revoked license.

On Thursday, after a stop in Seattle, Hernandez walked off a plane in Anchorage. Two airport police officers met Hernandez at the gate, told him about the warrant and arrested him, the charges say. In an interview, Hernandez told the Anchorage DEA officer he was carrying eight ounces of meth and four ounces of heroin in his checked bags, according to the charging document.

"Additionally, Hernandez consented to the search of all of his bags and his cellphones," the charges say.

A drug dog helped confirm what Hernandez said, alerting that the bags had drugs inside. The officer got a search warrant, opened the bags and found exactly what Hernandez said he would find, the charges say.

Hernandez is jailed and charged with possession of 100 or more grams of heroin and 50 or more grams of methamphetamine with intent to distribute.

Reach Casey Grove at or 257-4589.