News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 3, 2006

California Man Sentenced in Million Dollar Meth Conspiracy, Money Laundering Conspiracy

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI: Preston L. Grubbs, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration St. Louis Division Office, and Todd P. Graves, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a California man was sentenced in federal court today for his role in methamphetamine and money laundering conspiracies.

This case involves a major methamphetamine conspiracy Graves said, including 21 convicted co-defendants and nearly $1 million in proceeds from the sale of methamphetamine.

Ivan M. Tofiga, 31, of Corona, California, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Scott O. Wright this morning to 27 years in federal prison without parole. Tofiga is also subject to an order of forfeiture for approximately $1 million and property located in Corona, California, which was derived from the illegal drug trafficking.

On January 27, 2005, Tofiga pleaded guilty to participating in methamphetamine and money laundering conspiracies. Tofiga admitted that he participated in a conspiracy to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine between December 1, 2000, and April 22, 2004. Tofiga also admitted that he participated in a conspiracy to launder the proceeds of that illegal drug trafficking between December 1, 2000, and April 22, 2004.

Tofiga is the 16th co-defendant to be sentenced in this case, which involves a total of 21 co-defendants, all of whom have pleaded guilty.

Garrett L. Johnson, 42, of Blue Springs, Missouri, was sentenced on September 22, 2005, to 11 years and three months in federal prison without parole. On February 4, 2005, Johnson pleaded guilty to participating in the methamphetamine and money laundering conspiracies.

Joshua L. Drummond, 26, of Independence, Missouri, was sentenced on September 22, 2005, to eight years in federal prison without parole. On February 8, 2005, Drummond pleaded guilty to participating in the methamphetamine conspiracy.

Co-defendants Jason M. Butler, 30, and Matthew R. Klussman, 29, both of Independence, were each sentenced on September 21, 2005. Butler was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison without parole and Klussman was sentenced to three years and one month in federal prison without parole. Klussman and Butler both pleaded guilty to participating in the methamphetamine conspiracy.

Peti Nofoagia Iosua, 39, who is incarcerated by the Florida Department of Corrections, and Juan Ramon Perez, 29, of Glendora, California, were sentenced on September 20, 2005. Iosua was sentenced to 25 years in federal prison without parole and Perez was sentenced to 14 years in federal prison without parole. Iosua and Perez each pleaded guilty to their role in the methamphetamine conspiracy and the money laundering conspiracy.

On September 9, 2005, Jason C. Highley, 27, of Independence, was sentenced to four years and nine months in federal prison without parole. Highley pleaded guilty to maintaining a place of residence for the purpose of distributing, using and manufacturing methamphetamine.

On Aug. 29, 2005, Christopher L. Earley, 28, of Independence, was sentenced to 10 years and one month in federal prison without parole for this role in the methamphetamine conspiracy.

On August 20, 2005, Guy A. Girratono, 28, of Independence, was sentenced to four years in federal prison without parole. Girratono pleaded guilty to participating in the methamphetamine conspiracy.

On August 20, 2005, Janet Castillo Martinez, 32, of San Diego, California, was sentenced to five years of federal probation for her role in the money laundering conspiracy.

On August 11, 2005, Matthew S. Stewart, 29, and Laurie J. Pazienza, 24, whose addresses are unknown, and Elizabeth Ann Corley, 24, of Kissimmee, Florida, were sentenced for their role in the conspiracies to launder money and distribute methamphetamine. Stewart was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison without parole, Pazienza was sentenced to one year and one day in federal prison without parole, and Corley was sentenced to probation. Pazienza and Stewart pleaded guilty to participating in the methamphetamine conspiracy. Corley, pleaded guilty to her role in the money laundering conspiracy.

On July 20, 2005, Casey L. McElroy, 34, of Excelsior Springs, Missouri, was sentenced to six years in federal prison without parole. McElroy pleaded guilty on January 21, 2005, to participating in the methamphetamine and money laundering conspiracies.

On May 17, 2005, Matthew G. Stansbury, 26, of Independence, was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison without parole. Stansbury pleaded guilty on November 23, 2004, to participating in the methamphetamine conspiracy.

Five co-defendants also have pleaded guilty to their role in the two conspiracies to distribute methamphetamine and launder funds generated by the distribution of methamphetamine.

Rickie T. Atagi, 35, of Independence, Missouri Ronald Wayne Younger, 34, of Blue Springs, Missouri, Spencer La Key, 27, of Kansas City, Missouri, and Timothy A. Gorman, 27, of Sugar Creek, Missouri, each pleaded guilty to participating in the methamphetamine conspiracy. Younger also pleaded guilty to his role in the money laundering conspiracy. Noel Joseph Cruz, 31, of Duarte, California, pleaded guilty to participating in the money laundering conspiracy.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael S. Oliver. It was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Jackson County Drug Task Force, the Independence, Missouri, Police Department, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the Corona, Calif., Police Department and the California Bureau of Narcotics Enforcement.

Requests for additional information should be directed to Group Supervisor Alan Wilson or Public Information Officer Special Agent Shirley Armstead at 314/538-4600.

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