Breaking News
More () »

Judge denies lower bail for operators of Mike’s Market in Mountain View

Fourteen defendants caught in an undercover police sting dubbed 'Operation Mike Drop' targeting alleged drug sales and EBT food card fraud, appeared in court.

SAN DIEGO — Fourteen defendants caught in an undercover police sting dubbed 'Operation Mike Drop' appeared in court Thursday, most arguing for lower bail.

The investigation targeted alleged drug sales and EBT food card fraud at Mikes Market in Mountain View.

Prosecutor said the two men operating the store, Loay Alosh and David Adams, were involved in neighborhood gang activity.

"It has been a hotbed for violent crime, and it has been a scourge on the community for years," said Deputy District Attorney Miriam Hemming in court.

Alosh and Adams are two of 22 defendants charged with a string of primarily nonviolent felonies in the case, including drug dealing, fraud, and grand theft; however, many of the charges include gang affiliation enhancements.

Six of the 221 counts in the indictment involve allegations of illegal firearm possession.

Hemming described the pair of store operators in court as methodical and calculating.

"They've entered into a partnership with the local gang that has taken over that store and taken over that block to the detriment of that entire community," said Hemming.

The defendants were charged in an alleged scheme where prosecutors said customers used EBT food debit cards to pay for drugs, which were sold in the store's parking lot by a local street gang.

"We know this because there have been undercover officers that went and conducted the exact transactions that I am describing to the court, and they have done it with Mr. Alosh and Mr. Adams in person," Hemming alleged in court.

Defense attorneys attempted to paint a brighter picture of the Mike's Market employees in their arguments for lower bail.

"Mr. Alosh is a respected member of the community. He was cooperative with law enforcement. He never sold drugs or was involved in any illegal gang activity," said defense attorney Scott Salmu.

"Unlike all the people that the court heard this morning, he actually volunteers in the community and gives back to the community and his family," said defense attorney Pamela Lacher, who represents Adams.

In the end, the judge ruled the bail amount for both store operators would remain unchanged at $250,000 each.

Alosh and Adams remain in custody. 

They'll be back in court with other defendants on December 2.

Mike's Market appeared shut down Thursday afternoon. 

There has yet to be an indication of when it will reopen.

WATCH RELATED: Mountain View standoff suspect pleads not guilty, judge denies bail


Before You Leave, Check This Out