September 12, 2012
Contact: Jodie Underwood
Phone Number: (206) 553-5443
Brothers Who Led Heroin And Meth Distribution Ring Sentenced To Long Prison Terms
SEATTLE - Two brothers who, with other fugitive brothers, led a Mexico based drug smuggling and distribution ring were sentenced on September 7, 2012, in U.S. District Court in Seattle to over a decade in prison. One of the leaders, Orlando Olais Rocha, 32, of Lynnwood, Washington was sentenced to 17 years in prison. His younger brother, the second in command of the Washington State part of the ring, Everado Olais Rocha, 28, also of Lynnwood, was sentenced to 14 years in prison. Both men pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, specifically methamphetamine and heroin, and conspiracy to engage in money laundering. Orlando Olais Rocha also pleaded guilty to possession of a firearm during a drug trafficking crime. That crime carries a mandatory minimum five year sentence to run consecutive to any other sentence.
“This investigation is another example of DEA's global reach in stopping violent drug trafficking organizations that endanger our communities and threaten our children’s future,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Matthew G. Barnes. “The prison sentences of these two violent offenders are a direct result of the coordination and cooperation of our law enforcement and intelligence partnerships.”
The investigation of the Olais Rocha organization began in 2009, through the efforts of the South Snohomish County Narcotics Task (SSCNTF). Between January and June 2011, DEA partnered with SSCNTF, on a court authorized wiretap of cell phones used by the organization providing insights into the flow of drugs and cash, and the violence that is part and parcel of the drug trade. Members smuggled drugs across the border from Mexico, to a stash house in Arizona. Drugs and cash were packed in special compartments of vehicles or in voids within the frame of the vehicle. Some loads were packed in the void beneath the bed of a pick-up truck. The drugs were then transported to the Seattle area, and elsewhere, for distribution.
In June 2011, agents and officers began to make arrests in the investigation and seized 8 pounds of crystal methamphetamine, 7 pounds of heroin, more than $174,000 in cash, nine firearms and 10 cars.
In all, 15 members of the drug conspiracy have now been sentenced. These two leaders are forfeiting more than $65,000 in cash and eight firearms including an AK-47 rifle. Both men are Mexican citizens who will be deported following their prison terms.
This was an Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task (OCDETF) investigation, providing supplemental federal funding to the federal and state agencies involved. The investigation was led by South Snohomish County Narcotics Task Force and the Drug Enforcement (DEA). The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Sarah Vogel.