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Nine Arrested in Drug Ring Bust

Indictments were handed down for nine men last week. The gang is accused of running drugs from California into Alaska and the investigation into their activities ran over four years. The total amount of product smuggled during that time amounts to more than $2 million.

The details of the operation were not released, but while three of the accused are residents of Alaska, several are Mexican citizens. Two of those indicted are fugitives, assumed to be in California. Those that were captured in California will be sent to Alaska for trial.

The gang is said to have smuggled a variety of drugs, including large amounts of cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana. Because the prices for drugs are higher here (what isn’t?), the profits are concomitantly increased, so long as the product can safely reach our shores. In this case, the money made was shipped back to California and perhaps from there, on to Mexico. About $250,000 in cash was seized as part of the case.

“The investigation has revealed that the money that's being laundered is being laundered back to California,” said Yvonne Lamoureux, Asst. U.S. Attorney for Alaska.

Sentences for the listed offenses could give each of the defendants a decade in prison.

We like to think of our state as removed from the troubles of the lower 48. After all, we have troubles of our own. But, as evidenced in this case, there are predators looking to score in Alaska, and unfortunately, we have the same appetite for drugs as anywhere else.

KTVA reported that Yvonne Lamoureux, the Assisstant US Attorney for Alaska, said, “There are nine named defendants in this indictment. That doesn't mean the conspiracy didn't include more than those nine individuals.”


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