TWO CONVICTED OF COCAINE TRAFFICKING IN INTERSECTING CONSPIRACIES
Men at Opposite Ends of Distribution Chain in “Operation Clean Ride”
Two Seattle area men were convicted this morning in U.S. District Court in Seattle of Conspiracy to Distribute Cocaine and Crack Cocaine, and additional counts of Possession of Cocaine and Crack Cocaine with intent to Distribute. When sentenced on September 11, 2009, 38-year-old CEDRIC BARQUET of Seattle, and 38-year-old JUAN SALINAS BAUTISTA a/k/a Jose A. Morales Victoria, of Des Moines, Washington, face mandatory minimum ten years in prison to life in prison. Chief U.S. District Judge Robert S. Lasnik presided over a week-long trial. The jury deliberated about three hours before finding the men guilty on all counts.
BAUTISTA and BARQUET were identified for prosecution during a year-long investigation dubbed “Operation Clean Ride.” The investigation, lead by the ATF Violent Gang Task Force, took its name from the fact that leaders of the group operated out of a South Seattle car detail business. Fifteen people were arrested on March 20, 2008, following a series of court authorized wiretaps and surveillance that revealed the reach of the drug distribution network. Evidence at trial proved that BAUTISTA was a cocaine supplier to members of the conspiracy, delivering multiple kilo quantities of cocaine to Nicola Kilcup and her husband Shawn Piper. In court numerous cell phone calls were played for the jury as Nicola Kilcup conspired with BAUTISTA to schedule drug deliveries. BARQUET was at the other end of the drug organization, obtaining cocaine from Nicola Kilcup and cooking it into crack and selling it to his customers. Again, both recorded phone calls and surveillance video captured BARQUET’s drug activity.
Last year Nicola Kilcup was sentenced to 12 years in prison, Shawn Piper was sentenced to 13 years in prison, and Nicola’s brother Gary Kilcup, who was also involved in the drug conspiracy was sentenced to 15 years in prison. With the convictions of BARQUET and BAUTISTA, all the defendants in the case have either pleaded guilty or been convicted.
The case was investigated by the ATF Violent Gang Task Force which includes agents and officers from the Seattle Police Department, the King County Sheriff’s Office, Washington State Department of Corrections, Kent Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Additional assistance with the arrests on March 20, 2008, was provided by the United States Marshal’s Service Pacific Northwest Fugitive Task Force, the SeaTac Police Department and the Des Moines Police Department
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Vince Lombardi and Todd Greenberg.
For additional information please contact Emily Langlie, Public Affairs Officer for the United States Attorney’s Office at (206) 553-4110.