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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Virginia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, May 3, 2019

Gang Leader Sentenced to Prison for Marijuana Trafficking Conspiracy

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – A Washington, D.C. man was sentenced today to six and a half years in prison for in prison for his role in a marijuana conspiracy.

“This case illustrates certain dangers posed by organized criminal gangs: They have a built in distribution network, a division of labor and development of expertise by tasking their membership, and as a result they have the ability to move large quantities of narcotics,” said G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia. “Here, the distribution of marijuana resulted in the generation of thousands of dollars of illicit profit—cash—which generally serves as a dinner bell for armed robbers and can easily result in violent conflict and collateral injury to innocent bystanders. Thank you to our law enforcement partners who bravely continue to assist in our efforts in thwart drug trafficking and bring those perpetrators to justice.”

According to court documents, Cuong Huynh, 31, was the leader of a marijuana trafficking ring and leader of a criminal street gang known as the Asian Dragon Family. Under Huynh’s leadership, the Washington, D.C. area marijuana trafficking ring distributed over 100 kilograms of marijuana over a two-year period.

“This sentencing demonstrates the commitment of the FBI and our task force partners who work each day to identify individuals who are injecting drugs into our communities and leading criminal organizations.,” said Matthew J. DeSarno, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office’s Criminal Division. “Thank you to our partners for their continued support in tackling organized crime and bringing those responsible to justice.”

Huynh operated at the center of the conspiracy, maintaining multiple wholesale sources of supply for marijuana while also maintaining a distribution network in the Washington, D.C. region. Huynh’s girlfriend, Victoria Nguyen, stored tens of thousands of dollars in cash proceeds at a time from the sale of marijuana and safeguarded those earnings for the next wholesale purchase. Nikco Nguyen and Michael Ngo, who were also members of the Asian Dragon Family, distributed marijuana for Huynh, picked up cash proceeds from customers and re-packaged larger quantities of marijuana into redistribution amounts.

Nikco Nguyen was sentenced to 30 months in prison and Michael Ngo was sentenced to 24 months in prison on April 12 for their roles in the conspiracy. Victoria Nguyen was sentenced to two years in prison on April 5 for her role in the conspiracy.

G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Matthew J. DeSarno, Special Agent in Charge, Criminal Division, FBI Washington Field Office, made the announcement after sentencing by U.S. District Judge Leonie M. Brinkema. Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Lena Munasifi and Assistant U.S. Attorney Dennis M. Fitzpatrick prosecuted the case.

This matter was investigated by the FBI Washington Field Office’s Transnational Organized Crime Task Force which consists of FBI Agents, task force officers from multiple other federal agencies, local, state and international law enforcement partners.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 1:19-cr-12.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Contact: 
Joshua Stueve Director of Communications joshua.stueve@usdoj.gov
Updated May 3, 2019