Drug Enforcement Administration

Seattle

Keith R. Weis, Special Agent in Charge

July 21, 2015

Contact: Jodie Underwood

Phone Number: (206) 553-5443

Two Men Who Allowed Bellevue Apartment For Hash Oil Manufacturing Sentenced To Three Years In Prison

Hash oil extraction using explosive gas caused November 2013 fatal apartment fire

SEATTLE - Two men who invited a third man to use their Bellevue, Washington apartment for the illegal manufacturing of hash oil were sentenced to prison on July 20, 2015, in U.S. District Court in Seattle.

Jesse D. Kaplan, 32, of Redmond, Washington and Daniel James Strycharske, 29, of Kirkland, Washington were each sentenced to three years in prison and three years of supervised release.  Last month the lead defendant in the case, David Richard Schultz, II, 33, was sentenced to nine years in prison.  Schultz was using highly explosive butane gas to make hash oil in the Hampton Greens Apartment complex on November 5, 2013 while the other two apartment residents were sleeping.  The gas exploded and numerous people in the apartment complex were injured fleeing the fire.  One of them, a former Mayor of Bellevue, died following treatment for injuries sustained while trying to escape the building.

According to records filed in the case, Kaplan and Strycharske rented the apartment and allowed Schultz to set up the BHO manufacturing equipment in their space.  The men planned to sell the BHO for profit.  All three men suffered injuries in the explosion.  Former Bellevue Mayor Nan Campbell was hospitalized for a broken pelvis she suffered trying to escape the flames.  She later died following complications from her hospitalization.  Two other apartment residents suffered shattered bones as they had to jump from their upper level apartments.  In all the fire caused more than $2 million in property damage.  The total amount of restitution owed by these defendants will be finalized by a hearing scheduled for September 21, 2015.

Judge Robart determined an upward departure from the sentencing guidelines was warranted for the defendants in the case because of the severe damage to the community.  “I am troubled that the conduct was motivated by greed - the money that could be made by manufacturing hash oil,” Judge Robart said.  He added that prison sentences may deter others from getting involved in butane hash oil manufacturing.

This case was investigated by multiple local and federal agencies, including: the Drug Enforcement (DEA), Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & (ATF), the U.S. Marshals Service, and the Bellevue Police and Fire Departments.

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