Nine Arrested for Gun and Drug Trafficking
July 23 (Seattle) – A Drug Enforcement Administration Task Force with significant leadership from the Seattle Police Department arrested nine people following a month-long investigation of drug and gun trafficking by an Everett, Washington based criminal group. Four of those arrested are being charged in federal court with conspiracy to distribute heroin and being illegal aliens in possession of firearms. Five additional defendants face charges in state court. The defendants made their initial appearance in U.S. District Court in Seattle on July 20, 2012.
“These arrests illustrate the connection between the international drug trade and gun violence. This deadly combination boils down to two things: greed and power. The cooperative effort in this investigation underscores DEA’s commitment to aggressively pursue dangerous criminal elements to keep our communities safe,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Matthew G. Barnes.
Over the course of the month-long investigation, law enforcement seized nearly three pounds of heroin and nearly one pound of methamphetamine. Fourteen firearms were purchased by a person working with law enforcement: seven shotguns, two rifles and five handguns. Some of the weapons had been reported stolen in jurisdictions as widespread as Tacoma and Brier, Washington. The defendants charged in federal court include: Juan Velasco San Juan, 35, and Gumercindo Guzman Torres, 39, both of Everett, Washington; Eder Mendoza Pino, 25, of Monroe, Washington, and Jesus Dominguez Duran, 25, of Lynnwood, Washington.
If convicted, the defendants face a mandatory minimum of five years and up to 40 years in prison. The charges contained in the complaint are only allegations. A person is presumed innocent unless and until he or she is proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.