Florida Keys

Meth was found last year in the laundry and the Pokémon cards. Cops just made an arrest.


A Key West man was arrested and charged Wednesday with trafficking in both methamphetamine and marijuana in 2017 after police said they found more than an ounce of meth in his home at that time.

Lazaro Adrian Alvarez, 26, who had been out on bond for a misdemeanor possession of marijuana charge, was arrested in the 2017 case in which his then-boyfriend was also arrested and later convicted.

At the time, Alvarez’s boyfriend, Paul Clift, admitted a collection of drugs was his, but neither would cop to having a stash of meth and marijuana hidden in the laundry.

The meth trafficking charge alone carries a minimum mandatory prison sentence of seven years upon conviction.

On Thursday, Alvarez was locked up at the Stock Island jail on $110,000 bond.

Clift, 30, was arrested Dec. 13, 2017, for possession of meth and marijuana and two counts of possession of a controlled substance without a prescription, police said. Alvarez was arrested only for misdemeanor possession of marijuana.

Clift pleaded no contest on Feb. 23 to possession of meth, felony possession of marijuana and possession of a controlled substance without a prescription and was sentenced to three years’ probation, according to state prison records.

But on Thursday, Clift was in the Stock Island jail, where sheriff’s spokesman Adam Linhardt said he has been since his December arrest. Clift’s listed attorney, Bernadette Restivo, didn’t immediately return two messages and State Attorney Dennis Ward’s spokesman said he’d have to check the case on Friday but confirmed the probation sentence.

Back in December 2017, a special task force from the Key West Police Department with help from the Drug Enforcement Administration served a search warrant at 719 Waddell Ave., where Clift and Alvarez were living at the time.

Police said they found a total of 1.4 ounces of meth and 8.4 ounces of marijuana, along with prescription pills.

Clift told police he wanted to make sure the process went smoothly and that he was willing to cooperate, the arrest warrant states.

The bulk of the meth was found inside a laundry basket in a hallway closet.

Nearly six ounces of marijuana was also found in the laundry.

At the time, police said, Alvarez asked if he could “help police” to prevent Clift from going to jail. Clift confessed to possessing all the narcotics found in the home — with the exception of the 1.2 ounces of meth and the marijuana found in the laundry.

Meth was also found inside a binder between plastic sheets of Pokémon cards, according to the arrest warrant for Alvarez.

The arrest warrant does not explain why Alvarez is only now being arrested for the 2017 case but says “at this time probable cause exists” to charge him with dealing meth and marijuana.

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.