VANCOUVER, WASHINGTON MAN SENTENCED TO LONG PRISON TERM FOR CONSPIRACY TO DISTRIBUTE METHAMPHETAMINE
Member of Violent ‘Sureno’ Street Gang Moving Large Amounts of Meth
ARMANDO S. SALDANA, 29, of Vancouver, Washington, was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Tacoma to ten years in prison and five years of supervised release for Conspiracy to Distribute Methamphetamine. SALDANA’s brother, Ernesto Saldana, 27, was sentenced on October 1, 2010, to 70 months in prison for Conspiracy to Distribute Methamphetamine. Both men are gang members who have extensive criminal histories. U.S. District Judge Robert J. Bryan imposed the sentence.
According to records filed in the case, the SALDANA brothers came to the attention of the FBI-sponsored Vancouver Safe Streets Task Force when officers learned they were suspected of dealing crystal methamphetamine – a highly pure methamphetamine known as “Ice.” On four different occasions in October and November 2009, the men were involved in drug sales that were monitored by law enforcement using audio and/or video. The drug sales occurred in parking lots outside grocery stores and restaurants in Vancouver, as well as at the brothers’ residences.
. ARMANDO S. SALDANA is an admitted Sureno street gang member with convictions since 1997 of assault, robbery, drug possession, burglary and escape. Ernesto M. Saldana is also an admitted member of the Sureno street gang. He has criminal convictions for drug possession, car theft, robbery and illegal possession of a firearm.
The case was investigated by the SWIGET, (Southwest Washington Interagency Gang Enforcement Team) sponsored by the FBI Safe Streets task Force. The team is made up of officers and agents of the FBI, Vancouver Police Department (VPD), Clark County Sheriff’s Department and the Washington State Department of Corrections. SWIGET was formed to combat violent gang crime in the Vancouver, Washington area. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Mike Dion.
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.