This past weekend, a lengthy, 18 month drug trafficking investigation (a Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force investigation) of a criminal group with ties to California and Mexico resulted in 17 arrests-- seven of whom are from Kent, Washington. In the course of 36 hours, local, state, and federal drug enforcement agents searched 20 locations throughout the Puget Sound region. Officials seized a total of 18 lbs of heroin, 29 lbs of methamphetamine, 6 lbs of cocaine, $178,000 in cash and sixteen firearms, including five assault rifles. Seattle PD was heavily involved in the investigation.
During the investigation, law enforcement served court-authorized search warrants on 17 residences, three storage facilities and more than a dozen vehicles tied to the criminal group. The facilities were located in Auburn, Bellevue, SeaTac, Seattle, Tukwila, Renton, Port Orchard, and Everett. The Court also authorized wire taps on the suspects.
Overall, indictments and criminal complaints have been filed against 22 defendants. While the bulk of them were charged with criminal conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, some were charged with conspiracy to commit money laundering. Due to the drug quantities involved, some of the defendants face mandatory minimum sentences of ten years in prison. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Vince Lombardi and Thomas Woods.
Distribution of Meth and Heroin under Washington Law
RCW 69.50 - (Uniform Controlled Substances Act) addresses drug crimes in the state of Washington. Possession of a controlled substance listed under the VUCSA is a Class C Felony, which is punishable by up to 5 years in prison and a $10,000 fine. Simple possession of a small amount of heroin or meth is a class C felony, but even a first-time conviction of selling the drug is a mandatory minimum sentence of 2 years.
However, if you are charged with the Manufacture, Delivery or Possession with Intent to Deliver Heroin or meth in Washington State you are facing a B felony, which is punishable by up to 10 years in jail and a $25,000 fine.
Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Everett, King County, Snohomish County, Skagit County, Whatcom County and Kittitas County Area VUCSA Attorney
Seattle criminal defense lawyer Steve Karimi has defended many serious drug charges. As a former prosecutor, he has the experience to be able to provide aggressive legal defenses for a variety of VUCSA crimes, juvenile drug charges, marijuana DUIs, and felony trafficking charges. Drug charges, especially high level ones, are nothing to joke about. They can lead to serious life consequences such as a criminal record, tarnished reputation, decreased employment opportunities, and academic opportunities. Mr. Karimi zealously represent his clients. In many cases, he is able to get VUSCA cases dismissed in the Snohomish County Courts, as well as getting charges off your records.
If you have been charged with a drug-related crime, contact our VUCSA defense attorney today or call 206-621-8777 to schedule a free initial consultation. We also have 24-hour call service available at 206-660-6200. Do not fight the legal system alone. Mr. Karimi will make sure your rights are defended.