News and Press Releases

CAMBODIAN NATIONAL WITH LONG CRIMINAL HISTORY SENTENCED TO NEARLY 12 YEARS IN PRISON FOR GUN AND DRUG CRIMES
Defendant On the Run From Drug Charges Arrested In Second Drug Investigation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 18, 2009

HOEUN SAUN YONG, 34, of Renton, Washington was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Seattle to 140 months in prison and 5 years of supervised release for two counts of Possession of Cocaine with Intent to Distribute and Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime. YONG was arrested most recently in February 2008, after he ran from police during a drug deal he scheduled for the parking lot of a Fred Meyer store in Renton, Washington. YONG bailed out of the car in which he was riding and had to be chased down and subdued by a police dog and the use of a taser. At sentencing U.S. District Judge John C. Coughenour noted that he was particularly troubled by in incident in YONG’s criminal history where he robbed and assaulted a 10-year-old boy.

According to records filed in the case, in October 2007, YONG was arrested as he arrived at a drug deal in Seattle with a kilo size brick of cocaine hidden in his car. While in custody, YONG and his co-defendant made numerous telephone calls from the jail that were captured on the recording system. YONG instructed his girlfriend to get rid of substantial amounts of cocaine that were hidden in their apartment. The recording reveals the sounds of the woman disposing of the drugs by flushing them down the toilet. The girlfriend was not able to dispose of the firearms which YONG had hidden in the apartment. Officers serving a search warrant found the guns in YONG’s bedroom closet including a Charter Arms .38 caliber revolver, a Beretta 9mm semi-automatic pistol, and a stolen Smith and Wesson .38 caliber revolver. YONG was prohibited from possessing firearms because of previous felony convictions in King County, Washington including Assault (1993), Car Theft (1993,1994), and Attempting to Elude a Police Vehicle (1994, 2004).

Following the October 2007 arrest, YONG bailed out of jail and failed to appear on state charges of Unlawful Possession of a Firearm and Possession of Cocaine with Intent to Distribute. In January 2008, Drug Enforcement Administration task force officers became aware of YONG’s continued drug dealing, and facilitated his arrest as he was preparing to sell $600 worth of cocaine.

In his sentencing memo, Special Assistant United States Attorney Andrew Colasurdo noted that YONG has been arrested 18 times and convicted 15 times. YONG admits he was a gang member and has used a firearm in gang confrontations, once shooting a rival gang member as the man ran away.

In asking the court to find YONG a career offender, Mr. Colasurdo wrote to the court that YONG “has consistently and repeatedly disobeyed orders of the court, and disregarded the law, by intentionally engaging in criminal behavior. His involvement in the distribution of drugs and his possession of firearms is of great concern to the United States due to the fact that Yong has proven to be prone to violence and will stop at almost nothing to evade the police. Based on Yong’s history, as well as his actions in this case, the United States is truly concerned for the safety of those in the community and believe that the public must be protected from him.”

YONG may be deported to Cambodia following his prison term.

The case was investigated by the Seattle Police Department, Port of Seattle Police Department, Renton Police Department, Tukwila Police Department, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

The case was prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Andrew Colasurdo. Mr. Colasurdo is a Deputy King County prosecutor specially designated to prosecute drug and gun cases in federal court.

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

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