Kodiak Man Arraigned on Drug Trafficking Charge
Denies Knowledge of Checked Luggage Containing Meth and Heroin Lodged in Spoiled Goat Intestines
Anchorage, Alaska – U.S. Attorney Bryan Schroder announced that Cenen Placencia, 71, of Kodiak, was arraigned today on a complaint charging him with possession with intent to distribute controlled substances.
On Nov. 20, 2019, Placencia was ticketed to depart from Anchorage International Airport, destined for Kodiak, Alaska. Investigators from the Alaska State Troopers (AST) Anchorage Airport Interdiction Team (AAIT) requested Placencia’s consent to search his checked luggage, which consisted of a 47-pound fish box that was duct taped shut with a rope tied around the box.
After obtaining Placencia’s consent, the box was opened and investigators observed loosely wrapped meat pieces frozen together in a single large mass. The meat did not appear to be for human consumption, and packaging and shipping was inconsistent with the standard methods of meat processing. Investigators obtained Placencia’s consent to fully thaw and search the meat while he waited for the next Kodiak flight. As the meat was thawing, investigators detected an odor consistent with spoiled meat, no longer safe for consumption.
10 duct tape wrapped balls, each slightly larger than a golf ball, were found lodged inside the intestines of what investigators believed to be a goat and contained, in total, six packages of approximately 389 grams of meth and six packages of approximately 740.5 grams of heroin.
Placencia stated he purchased the goat for $140 from a rancher in California, packed the box himself, and intended to eat the goat intestines. Further, he denied having any knowledge of the meth and heroin found inside the goat.
If convicted, Placencia faces a statutory maximum of 40 years in prison, a $5,000,000 fine, and a minimum of 4 years of supervised release. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed will be based upon the seriousness of the offense and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.
The Alaska State Troopers (AST) Anchorage Airport Interdiction Team (AAIT) and Coast Guard Investigative Services (CGIS) conducted the investigation leading to the charge in this case. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Christina Sherman.
A complaint is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.