Eleven Indicted in Methamphetamine Conspiracy
Federal Search Warrants Seized Heroin, Meth, Guns, and Cash in Multi-State Drug Trafficking Case
|U.S. Attorney’s Office December 02, 2011|
PORTLAND, OR—Eleven members of a multi-state drug trafficking organization have been indicted on federal charges alleging a conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine. The one-count federal indictment unsealed on Wednesday by U.S. Magistrate Dennis J. Hubel, charges the defendants with taking part in a conspiracy from February 2011 to the present to possess with intent to distribute and to distribute methamphetamine and to use cellular telephones to facilitate drug trafficking. Five defendants were arraigned on Wednesday, one was arraigned today, and the remaining defendants are pending arraignment. In the government’s request to have the defendants detained pending trial, it was noted that the multi-year investigation included court-authorized wire interceptions that captured communications between indicted defendants and sources of supply in Mexico. Through the course of the investigation, law enforcement seized more than 25 pounds of methamphetamine.
On Tuesday and Wednesday, federal agents, officers from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, Deputy U.S. Marshals, and police officers with the Portland Police Bureau, Hillsboro Police Department, the Beaverton Police Department, and the Clark Skamania Drug Task Force executed 14 search and arrest warrants. They recovered approximately 15 pounds of methamphetamine, heroin, more than 20 firearms, and large sums of cash. Six individuals have been arrested on state charges, and the federal investigation is ongoing.
“Methamphetamine continues to plague our communities,” said U.S. Attorney Amanda Marshall. “It is distributed by drug trafficking organizations with multi-state and international criminal contacts. The U.S. Attorney’s Office will work with our federal, state and local partners to pursue these organizations with all of the tools and resources at our disposal.”
The charges in the indictment carry significant penalties. All federally indicted defendants face mandatory-minimum ten year sentences with a maximum of life imprisonment.
The defendants include:
- Hugo Gonzalez-Pasaye, aka Gordo, 27, Hillsboro, OR
- Adrian Gonzalez-Pasaye, 35, Vancouver, WA
- Diego Bermudez-Ortiz, 23, Hillsboro, OR
- Edwin Magana-Solis, aka Meno, Roberto Lopez-Delgado, 27, Hillsboro, OR
- Mauricio Cruz-Garcia, aka Kalamako, Portland, OR
- Jose Garcia-Zambrano, 20, Hillsboro, OR
- Ricky Valero, 43, Forrest Grove, OR
- Gregorio Gutierrez-Montes, aka Goyo, 22, Portland, OR
“As evidenced by the drugs and guns seized in this investigation, drug dealers have an appetite for violence,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Matthew G. Barnes. “DEA and our law enforcement partners are committed to the safety of our communities and will continue to work together to remove these hardened criminals from our streets.”
“The targets were heavy hitting, large scale drug traffickers,” stated Washington County Sheriff Pat Garrett. “The excellent interagency cooperation that exists among our federal and state partners made this case possible. It will interrupt significant drug flow in the Portland Metro area and to other states as well.”
An indictment is only an accusation of a crime, and a defendant should be presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Geoffrey A. Barrow and John C. Laing and is being investigated by a joint task force comprised of agents and officers from the Westside Interagency Narcotics Task Force (WIN), DEA and FBI.
The investigation has been assisted by the U.S. Marshals Service, the Oregon State Police, the Vancouver Police Department, Clark County Sheriff’s Office, Washington County Sheriff’s Office, Sherwood Police Department, the Oregon National Guard, the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office, the Portland Police Bureau, the Hillsboro Police Department, the Beaverton Police Department, the Clark Skamania Drug Task Force, and the Douglas County District Attorney’s Office.