Two men sentenced to 20 years in prison for major drug-trafficking ring | Crime
Jefferson County District Attorney Scott Storey announced that two men who were kingpins of a major multi-level drug trafficking ring operating in the metro area have been sentenced to prison.
Jose Jimenez-Chacon, 30, was in Jefferson County District Court on April 3 where he was sentenced to 20 years in prison. The judge suspended eight of the 20 years on the condition that he not illegally reenter the US for 10 years. Jimenez-Chacon was the ringleader of this drug trafficking operation. He pled guilty in December, 2011 to Violation of the Colorado Organized Crime Control Act, Possession of Marijuana with Intent to Distribute and Conspiracy to Possess Marijuana with Intent to Distribute. Jimenez-Chacon lives in El Paso, Texas where he was arrested on the Jefferson County charges.
The ringleader of the Colorado branch of the operation, Conrado Arellano-Casas, 32, of Arvada, was sentenced to 20 years in prison on January 23. He pled guilty in December, 2011 to Violation of the Colorado Organized Crime Control Act, Distribution of a Controlled Substance and Conspiracy to Possess Marijuana with Intent to Distribute.
In June 2011 a Jefferson County Grand Jury returned a 96-count indictment naming 23 participants of a major drug trafficking ring in the Denver metropolitan area. The organization was bringing over 45,000 pounds of marijuana into the Denver area each year.
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Detectives with the West Metro Drug Task Force, assisted by agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), discovered that large tour buses were being used to transport marijuana from Mexico to a warehouse in Commerce City. The marijuana had been compressed into “brick” form and was hidden in specialized compartments which had been installed underneath the buses.
From May 2010 until April 2011, the buses traveled twice a week from Mexico to the warehouse in Commerce City, carrying over 400 pounds of marijuana
each time. The compressed marijuana had a street value of $50 per ounce and $800 a pound.
“This collaborative operation disabled a major drug-trafficking ring that was bringing $36M worth of marijuana into the Denver area each year,” said District Attorney Storey, “The West Metro Drug Task Force and the DEA did an outstanding job. With these offenders off the streets we have taken a significant step towards reducing drugs coming into our communities.”
Nineteen of the twenty-three men named in the indictment were arrested. Seventeen of the 19 have pled guilty and been sentenced. They were charged and convicted based on their level of participation in the organization. Ten received prison sentences, seven received probationary sentences, and two are still awaiting sentencing. There are warrants outstanding for the remaining four who are believed to be in Mexico.
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