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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Alaska

Friday, November 4, 2016

Anchorage Woman Sentenced to Eight Years in Prison for Participation in Heroin Trafficking Conspiracy

Anchorage, Alaska – U.S. Attorney Karen L. Loeffler announced today that an Anchorage woman was sentenced yesterday in federal court by U.S. District Judge Sharon L. Gleason for her role in a narcotics trafficking organization.

Rachel Rangel, 29, of Anchorage, Alaska, was sentenced to eight years, followed by five years of supervised release.  On June 29, 2016, Rangel plead guilty to conspiring with others in Alaska and elsewhere to traffic over one kilogram of heroin into Alaska.

According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy D. Edmonds, in the spring of 2014, Rangel developed a source of supply for heroin in southern California.  Rangel then enlisted a number of women from Alaska and Florida to retrieve heroin from her source of supply and carry it to Anchorage via commercial airliner.  Once Rangel received the heroin from her couriers, she and others in her organization would then resell the heroin in Anchorage for a profit.  Rangel managed this operation for just over a year and was responsible for over one kilogram of heroin being smuggled into Alaska and sold.

At the sentencing, the court highlighted the harm Rangel had caused both to the end users of the heroin she was responsible for distributing as well as to the women who had carried the heroin on her behalf.  The court also noted that Rangel’s conduct contributed to the current nationwide crisis of heroin addiction.

U.S. Attorney Loeffler commended the DEA, the FBI, the Alaska State Troopers, and the Anchorage Airport Police for the investigation of this case.

Drug Trafficking
Updated November 4, 2016