Mexican National Gets 240 Months for Conspiracy to Distribute Meth in Idaho and Oregon
BOISE – The third member of a conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine in Fruitland, Idaho, and Ontario, Oregon, was sentenced today to 240 months in federal prison, U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson announced. Jesus Octavio Arreola-Beltran, 24, a Mexican national from Sinaloa, Culiacan, was sentenced for conspiring to distribute methamphetamine and distributing methamphetamine. Chief U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill also ordered Arreola-Beltran to serve five years of supervised release following his prison term.
In sentencing Arreola-Beltran, Judge Winmill noted that methamphetamine is a serious problem in the United States, and that those who engage in trafficking in such poison deserve a substantial sentence. The judge added that it is even more serious when the defendant comes from another country with the primary purpose of trafficking in drugs.
On November 18, 2011, a federal jury found Arreola-Beltran and co-defendant Lucio Landeros-Valdez guilty at trial. According to testimony and evidence presented, the two men and co-defendant Jose Gabriel Virgen drove from Phoenix, Arizona, to Ontario, Oregon, with almost a pound of 94% pure methamphetamine. The jury heard testimony that on March 10, 2011, the day after their arrival in Oregon, the defendants sold approximately one ounce of the methamphetamine to an undercover law enforcement officer. Following the defendants' arrests later that day, officers found methamphetamine concealed in a box of Tide detergent in the trunk of the car they were driving. According to trial testimony, the serial numbers on eleven $100 bills in Arreola-Beltran’s possession at the time of his arrest matched previously recorded serial numbers on the bills used by the officer to purchase the sample of the methamphetamine earlier that day.
Landeros-Valdez and Virgen, both Mexican nationals, were sentenced earlier.
“Federal, state and local law enforcement in Idaho and Oregon will work together to ensure that methamphetamine traffickers receive sure and significant punishment,” said Olson. “Twenty years in federal prison sends the strong message that we will not tolerate the trafficking of this dangerous, addictive drug in Idaho's communities.”
The case was investigated by the Idaho State Police, the Ontario (Oregon) Police Department, and High Desert Drug Task Force officers.
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