Federal authorities have arrested an Inglewood man on a federal narcotics trafficking charge following an investigation that determined he ordered bulk quantities of at least one chemical used to make PCP and a search that led to the discovery over 2 kilograms of the drug, the Justice Department announced today.
William Cless Hubbard Jr., 63, was arrested Thursday evening by special agents with the Drug Enforcement Administration. Federal prosecutors this morning filed a criminal complaint against Hubbard charging him with possession with intent to distribute phencyclidine (PCP).
At his first court appearance late this afternoon in United States District Court, Hubbard was ordered detained pending trial. An arraignment in this case was scheduled on February 18.
During a search at Hubbard’s residence on Thursday, authorities recovered a one-gallon jug containing amber liquid which tested presumptively positive for PCP, according to the affidavit in support of the complaint. During a related search at a business owned by Hubbard, law enforcement found 55-gallon drums containing precursor chemicals regulated under the Controlled Substances Act that can be used to manufacture PCP.
The investigation into Hubbard began in October 2019 when authorities learned of a shipment of four drums of bromobenzene from China to a beauty supply company that Hubbard owned, the affidavit states. Bromobenzene has a number of applications, including being used in the manufacturing of PCP.
After the bromobenzene was delivered to his business on West Manchester Boulevard in South Los Angeles in December 2019, Hubbard was under surveillance by law enforcement. On several occasions in 2020, authorities observed Hubbard distributing suspected chemicals to several locations, including a building in Long Beach where a clandestine PCP lab was discovered last May.
A criminal complaint contains allegations that a defendant has committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
If convicted of the narcotics charge alleged in the complaint, Hubbard would face a statutory maximum sentence of life in federal prison.
This matter was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. Customs and Border Protection and L.A. IMPACT (the Los Angeles Interagency Metropolitan Police Apprehension Crime Task Force).
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney JohnPaul LeCedre of the General Crimes Section.