Juneau Man Sentenced to 30 Months in Prison and Co-Conspirator Pleads Guilty in Drug Conspiracy
|U.S. Attorney’s Office June 03, 2013|
ANCHORAGE—U.S. Attorney Karen L. Loeffler announced today that a Juneau resident was sentenced in Juneau to federal prison for drug conspiracy.
Joshua River Riley, 37, of Juneau, Alaska, was sentenced May 31, 2013, by U.S. District Court Judge Timothy M. Burgess to 30 months prison for his role in a drug trafficking conspiracy. Co-conspirator Bethel subsequently pled guilty to his role in the drug trafficking conspiracy. Bradley Arin Bethel, a co-conspirator, is scheduled to be sentenced on August 26, 2013.
According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Jack S. Schmidt, who prosecuted the case, the charges arose from a joint investigation including the Drug Enforcement Administration, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Juneau Police Department-Drug Metro Unit, which were investigating the importation of heroin into Juneau, Alaska.
Between October 2012 and continuing through November 2012, Riley and his co-conspirator Bethel conspired to import heroin from Portland, Oregon, to Juneau, Alaska. As part of the conspiracy, Riley contacted other co-conspirators in Oregon to supply heroin to Riley for subsequent distribution in Alaska. Riley and Bethel provided the money to purchase the heroin, and Bethel recruited a drug courier and arranged for the courier’s flight to Oregon to pick up the heroin with Riley, who had traveled the previous day to Oregon. Bethel provided the courier with a cell phone and programmed the number of Riley in the cell phone for the courier to get in contact with Riley in Oregon. Riley and the courier met in Oregon, and Riley provided 106.4 grams of heroin to the courier to transport back to Alaska via commercial air carrier for subsequent distribution.
Prior to imposing sentence, Judge Burgess emphasized the seriousness of the offense, the need to deter the defendant and others and to provide treatment in the most effective manner for the defendant as reasons for imposing the 48 month prison sentence.
Ms. Loeffler commended the Drug Enforcement Administration, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Juneau Police Department-Drug Metro Unit for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Riley and Bethel.