Criminal Defense Lawyer
DENVER – John Suthers, United States Attorney for the District of Colorado, and Jeffrey D. Sweetin, Special Agent in Charge of the Rocky Mountain Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration, announced that FELIX DONALD GARCIA, age 58, of Westminster, Colorado, was arrested on drug distribution and conspiracy charges. GARCIA’s son, JAVIER GARCIA, age 26, of Denver, Colorado, and ALVARO SOLIS, age 28, of Mexico, were also arrested and face identical charges. FELIX and JAVIER GARCIA were arrested on February 26, 2004. SOLIS was arrested March 1, 2004.
According to the affidavit in support of the Criminal Complaint, on December 24, 2004 the DEA received a tip from a confidential source that FELIX GARCIA was facilitating drug trafficking. The confidential source revealed that FELIX GARCIA was the source’s lawyer on a pending federal drug case. According to the affidavit, after the confidential source retained a second lawyer, federal prosecutors and the DEA met with the source and his/her second lawyer. The source provided authorities with historical information about drug dealing, detailing FELIX and JAVIER GARCIA’s involvement, as well as that of SOLIS. After the U.S. District Court modified the confidential source’s terms and conditions of bond to allow the confidential source to work proactively with law enforcement, the DEA began working with the source to develop the investigation.
The source told authorities that FELIX GARCIA introduced him/her to ALVARO SOLIS, who was the main cocaine supplier from Mexico. The source said that for more than a year he/she purchased from SOLIS between five to seven kilograms of cocaine each month, paying $18,000 to $19,000 per kilogram. The source believed a finders fee was paid to JAVIER GARCIA for each kilogram of cocaine.
The confidential source was arrested in 2003 and later decided to cooperate with authorities, which resulted in the call to the DEA. After the meeting with federal prosecutors and the DEA, the source met with FELIX GARCIA or JAVIER GARCIA on a number of occasions, arranging to purchase cocaine and negotiating to purchase quantities of methamphetamine. During the subsequent investigation authorities reportedly observed JAVIER GARCIA go to FELIX GARCIA’s law office to obtain a kilogram of cocaine from SOLIS. JAVIER GARCIA was then seen leaving the law office, driving directly to meet the confidential source, where he delivered the kilogram of cocaine, which subsequently tested to be 90 percent pure.
“Corruption by an officer of the court threatens the integrity of our criminal justice process,” United States Attorney John Suthers said. “Alleged wrongdoing by those entrusted to assure the integrity of our judicial process must be vigorously pursued.”
“This investigation highlights that no one is immune from the lure of illegal drugs, nor above the rule of law,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Jeffrey Sweetin. “The Drug Enforcement Administration will continue to aggressively investigate drug traffickers, no matter where those investigations lead.”
All three defendants are charged with Conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and to knowingly distribute more than 5 kilograms of cocaine and more than 50 grams of methamphetamine. This charge carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years and up to life in federal prison and/or a fine of up to $4 million. The defendants are also charged with knowingly possessing with intent to distribute and aiding and abetting the distribution of more than 500 grams of cocaine. This charge carries a penalty of not less than 5 years and up to 40 years in federal prison and/or a fine of up to $2 million.
This case was investigated by Special Agents and Special Federal Officers of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). The DEA received assistance from a special agent of the Internal Revenue Service, the Aurora Police Department and the Denver Police Department.
The case is being prosecuted by Bernie Hobson, who is the head of the Drug Task Force for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Colorado, Guy Till, and other Assistant U.S. Attorneys.
A Criminal Complaint is a probable cause charging document. Every defendant ultimately has a right to be indicted by a federal grand jury.
ALVARO SOLIS is scheduled to make his initial appearance in U.S. District Court in Denver today. FELIX GARCIA and JAVIER GARCIA made their initial appearance in federal court on February 27, 2004. They are scheduled to have a preliminary hearing and detention hearing on March 4, 2004.
These charges are only allegations and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
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