News and Press Releases

HOQUIAM RESIDENT SENTENCED TO FIVE YEARS IN PRISON FOR METH DEALING
Mexican National Faces Deportation, Forfeiture of Home for Drug Conviction

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 28, 2008

LUIS FARIAS MENDOZA, 26, of Hoquiam, Washington, was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Tacoma to five years in prison and five years of supervised release for Distribution of Methamphetamine. FARIAS MENDOZA will likely be deported following his prison term. In addition, FARIAS MENDOZA was ordered to forfeit a home he purchased in Hoquiam, Washington, because the $112,000 home was purchased with the proceeds from drug trafficking. U.S. District Judge Franklin D. Burgess imposed the sentence.

According to records filed in the case, FARIAS MENDOZA sold crystal methamphetamine to a confidential law enforcement source on two separate occasions. On January 25, 2007, FARIAS MENDOZA agreed to sell the confidential source the highly pure methamphetamine at a location in Forks, Washington, near the Bogachiel River. FARIAS MENDOZA sent a drug courier to make the deal. Five days later, on January 30, 2007, the confidential source set up a second drug deal. This time FARIAS MENDOZA delivered the methamphetamine to the confidential source at the Kalaloch Campground in Olympic National Park.

Further, as part of the forfeiture, the government presented evidence that FARIAS MENDOZA had purchased a home in Hoquiam using cash for the down payment, and paying some $2500 in cash each month to pay off the mortgage on the house nine months early. According to records with Washington State Employment Security, between 1987 and 2007, FARIAS MENDOZA reported earning only $829. The home was therefore judged to be purchased with the proceeds of criminal activity and was forfeited to the government.

The case was investigated by the Olympic Peninsula Narcotic Enforcement Team (OPNET) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Matthew Thomas.

For additional information please contact Emily Langlie, Public Affairs Officer for the United States Attorney’s Office, at (206) 553-4110.

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