Skip to main content
Press Release

Yuba County Man Pleads Guilty to Possessing a Firearm in Furtherance of Opioid Trafficking

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of California

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Rick Glenn Vardell, 60, of Olivehurst, pleaded guilty today to possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking offense, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.

According to court documents, on three occasions in 2018, Vardell sold a total of 1,989 Vicodin pharmaceutical pills containing hydrocodone to a confidential source. When law enforcement officers searched Vardell’s residence, they found a hidden safe containing an additional 1,000 hydrocodone pills for sale and $98,0000 in cash. Under the pillow on the bed by the safe was a loaded Smith and Wesson handgun.

This case is the product of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration. Assistant U.S. Attorney Cameron L. Desmond is prosecuting the case.

Vardell is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller on April 24, 2023. Vardell faces a mandatory minimum of five years in prison and up to life in prison and a fine of $250,000. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.

Updated February 6, 2023

Firearms Offenses