TWO KING COUNTY MEN CONVICTED OF ECSTASY DISTRIBUTION CONSPIRACY
Men Fled During Trial, Warrants Issued for Their Arrest
Two King County residents were convicted in absentia of Conspiracy to Distribute Ecstasy today, following a three day jury trial in front of U.S. District Judge Richard Jones. Neither man was in court when the jury verdict was returned. HARDEEP SINGH, 18, of Kent, Washington, failed to appear after the first day of trial. KAUSHAL KAINTH, 21, of Renton, Washington, failed to appear following the lunch break on the last day of trial. Jurors were instructed to ignore the fact that the defendants were no longer in the courtroom and were told not to speculate on their whereabouts. Both men are Indian Nationals with ties to Canada. Out of the presence of the jury, Judge Jones signed warrants for their arrest.
According to testimony at trial and records filed in the case, KAINTH and SINGH conspired to distribute large amounts of ecstasy. Over eight days in early May 2009, the men agreed to pay a third man to deliver large amounts of ecstasy and another drug, BZP, to co-conspirators at the Southcenter Mall in Tukwila, Washington and in San Jose, California. KAINTH and SINGH did not know the man they offered to pay for the delivery was a confidential informant working with law enforcement. The confidential informant recorded both men on audio and video. In all KAINTH and SINGH gave the confidential informant some 285,000 pills worth more than $2.8 million. The pills were all seized by law enforcement.
Jurors deliberated 2-½ hours before returning the guilty verdict.
The defendants face up to 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine. In addition they face enhanced penalties for absconding during trial.
The case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Nicholas Brown and Brian Werner.
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.