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Press Release

Bellevue, Washington man sentenced to 6+ years in prison for third federal conviction for drug and gun crimes

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Washington
Returned to armed drug dealing while still on supervision from prior federal conviction

Seattle – A 52-year-old Bellevue, Washington man was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Seattle to 77 months in prison for drug trafficking while illegally possessing a firearm, announced U.S. Attorney Tessa M. Gorman. Sanxay Heng Xayadeth was arrested September 6, 2023, after he sold drugs to a person working with law enforcement. Police searched his home and car that day and found dealer quantities of fentanyl pills, powder, and chunks, as well as cocaine. A Glock 19 semi-automatic pistol was found in his bedroom along with body armor.  Xayadeth is prohibited from possessing firearms due to prior convictions.

At today’s sentencing hearing U.S. District Judge James L. Robart said Mr. Xayadeth “has made a career out of selling poison. Fentanyl is causing one to two deaths a day in King County…. He demonstrates an indifference to the harm he does in the community.” Looking at Xayadeth’s long criminal history Judge Robart concluded, “Since age 21 it’s been a complete campaign of criminal conduct inflicted on the public.”

According to records filed in the case, since the age of 21, Xayadeth has served more than 23 years in prison. His first federal conviction was in 2005, for setting up an MDMA drug deal while armed with a 9 mm handgun. He had more drugs and multiple firearms at his residence and was sentenced to 10+ years in prison. In 2015, less than a year after being released from federal prison he was arrested with a stolen firearm and was sentenced to nearly eight years in prison.

In the current case, Xayadeth had been on supervised release for just over a year when he was identified as a significant drug dealer in King County. Following this prison term Xayadeth will be on four years of supervised release.

Xayadeth pleaded guilty in January 2024.

In asking for a sentence of more than six years in prison, Assistant United States Attorney Erika Evans noted the deadly toll of fentanyl on our community. “In 2023, the King County Medical Examiner’s office reported 1,091 confirmed overdose deaths related to fentanyl. In the first two and a half months of 2024 alone, there have been approximately 222 fentanyl-related deaths in King County. Fentanyl is estimated to be fifty times stronger than heroin. Even a tiny amount of fentanyl can kill. In 2023, the year Xayadeth committed his drug trafficking crimes, the King County Medical Examiner’s office said it struggled to store bodies partly due to the rise in fentanyl overdoses.”

The case was investigated by the Seattle Police Department, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF).

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Erika Evans.


Press contact for the U.S. Attorney’s Office is Communications Director Emily Langlie at (206) 553-4110 or

Updated April 2, 2024

Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses