drugs

Lax Immigration Policies May Have Shielded Killer of California Deputies

The man accused in Friday's horrific killing and carjacking spree near Sacramento, Calif., which resulted in the deaths of two sheriff's deputies and the wounding of two others, is a citizen of Mexico who was deported twice previously, but who apparently has been living in the United States for more than a decade.

Thanks to fingerprint sharing made possible by ICE's Secure Communities program (which DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson has indicated he wants to scale back), authorities were able to quickly determine that the man arrested had given them an alias. ICE has issued a statement saying that the accused is Luis Enrique Monroy-Bracamonte, and that he was deported in 1997 after a conviction in Arizona for possession of narcotics for sale, and again in 2001.

Unfortunately, the Secure Communities identification system seems to be the only part of our immigration system that has worked properly against this violent criminal.

According to news accounts, after he illegally re-entered the country after deportation, Monroy-Bracamonte lived and worked for years in Arizona, where he married Janelle Marquez Monroy-Bracamonte, reported to be a U.S. citizen. At some point they moved to the Salt Lake City, Utah, area, which is notably more hospitable to illegal residents. While working as a house painter and lawn mower there, Monroy-Bracamonte apparently racked up more than 10 misdemeanor traffic offenses and citations between 2003 and 2009 under an alias. In addition, he reportedly had a record of one traffic ticket and three small claims court filings for debt in his real name, also in Utah.

Had these offenses occurred in Arizona or other places where local law enforcement agencies are encouraged (and required in Arizona since 2012) to look into the identity and immigration status of lawbreakers, Monroy-Bracamonte might have come to the attention of local police and ICE a long time ago. But Salt Lake City Police Chief Chris Burbank has said such policies are "ridiculous" and "you actually increase crime when you enforce these kinds of laws." Who looks ridiculous now? Chief Burbank also has been active with a (very small) group of police chiefs lobbying against immigration enforcement and for amnesty.

Monroy-Bracamonte appears not to be your average illegal worker off on a weekend road trip with his wife. They were quite well armed for their trip to Sacramento, packing an AR-15 assault rifle and at least two pistols. Monroy-Bracamonte killed Sacramento County deputy Danny Oliver by shooting him in the forehead as he approached their car, which was parked in the lot of a Motel 6 that is notorious for criminal activity, and where they were registered as guests. They led officers on a six-hour chase, during which Monroy-Bracamonte killed detective Michael David Davis, Jr., and wounded two others before officers used tear gas to smoke him out of hiding in a house in Auburn, Calif.

Photographs reported to be of Monroy-Bracamonte suggest that he is a member of the criminal gang known as Mexican Pride and associated with the Sinaloa drug cartel.

Mexican Pride has been on ICE's radar screen for some time. Dozens of Mexican Pride members and associates have been arrested by ICE agents over the years, and the agency's arrest records show concentrations in Arizona, southeast Washington state, Colorado, and the Washington DC/Northern Virginia metro area. Mexican Pride members often have violent criminal histories, including assault, weapons offenses, drug dealing, burglary, robbery, and more. Federal gang intelligence reports say Mexican Pride is also involved in prostitution and human trafficking. The gang's membership includes Central Americans as well as Mexicans and U.S. citizens.

Unfortunately, ICE leadership under the Obama administration has pulled back on ICE's highly effective anti-gang programs in the last few years, and American communities – and families – are now paying the price.

ICE's National Gang Unit records show that 20 percent fewer gang arrests were made in 2013 than in 2012. And more and more of the ICE gang arrests have been occurring overseas rather than within the United States.

Whereas ICE agents once could work closely with local law enforcement agencies to target deportable gang members pro-actively with surge and street operations, now policies from ICE headquarters dictate that gang members are off-limits for enforcement until they are convicted of a serious crime. The result is that foreign gang members now can more easily avoid arrest, have little fear of immigration enforcement, are more likely to obtain benefits or relief from removal, are much less likely to face deportation, and are more likely to return after deportation. Liberal ICE detention policies have led to the release of gang members arrested by ICE investigators, which can enable them to escape prosecution. ICE agents also face limitations that are stricter than most other federal and local investigators on how they may use social media; such tools might well have enabled ICE to target Monroy-Bracamonte earlier.

So far ICE has been tight-lipped with information on Luis and Janelle Monroy-Bracamonte, referring questions to the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department. The following questions remain to be answered:

1 - Has Luis Monroy-Bracamonte had other encounters with immigration authorities since his removal in 2001?

2 - What are the circumstances of his 2001 removal? Did it follow another arrest, and which agency made that arrest?

3 - Did Janelle Marquez Monroy-Bracamonte (or anyone else) seek to sponsor Luis for a green card? Has he received any immigration benefit or exercise of prosecutorial discretion?

4 - Law enforcement agencies should be asked to disclose Monroy-Bracamonte's entire criminal history and record of civil infractions and charges.

5 - Does Janelle Monroy-Bracamonte have a criminal history?

6 - What identification documents did Monroy-Bracamonte provide to the officers who arrested him? Did they include a legally issued driver's license that he obtained in Utah or another state? Or did he use fraudulent documents?

7 - Did any Utah law enforcement officers ever inquire or investigate his identity or immigration status? If so, was he referred to ICE?

The answers to these questions may guide lawmakers and local law enforcement agencies to adopt, or reinstate, more effective enforcement practices that prioritize public safety over protecting criminal aliens.

Lax Immigration Policies May Have Shielded Killer of California Deputies

The man accused in Friday's horrific killing and carjacking spree near Sacramento, Calif., which resulted in the deaths of two sheriff's deputies and the wounding of two others, is a citizen of Mexico who was deported twice previously, but who apparently has been living in the United States for more than a decade.

Thanks to fingerprint sharing made possible by ICE's Secure Communities program (which DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson has indicated he wants to scale back), authorities were able to quickly determine that the man arrested had given them an alias. ICE has issued a statement saying that the accused is Luis Enrique Monroy-Bracamonte, and that he was deported in 1997 after a conviction in Arizona for possession of narcotics for sale, and again in 2001.

Unfortunately, the Secure Communities identification system seems to be the only part of our immigration system that has worked properly against this violent criminal.

According to news accounts, after he illegally re-entered the country after deportation, Monroy-Bracamonte lived and worked for years in Arizona, where he married Janelle Marquez Monroy-Bracamonte, reported to be a U.S. citizen. At some point they moved to the Salt Lake City, Utah, area, which is notably more hospitable to illegal residents. While working as a house painter and lawn mower there, Monroy-Bracamonte apparently racked up more than 10 misdemeanor traffic offenses and citations between 2003 and 2009 under an alias. In addition, he reportedly had a record of one traffic ticket and three small claims court filings for debt in his real name, also in Utah.

Had these offenses occurred in Arizona or other places where local law enforcement agencies are encouraged (and required in Arizona since 2012) to look into the identity and immigration status of lawbreakers, Monroy-Bracamonte might have come to the attention of local police and ICE a long time ago. But Salt Lake City Police Chief Chris Burbank has said such policies are "ridiculous" and "you actually increase crime when you enforce these kinds of laws." Who looks ridiculous now? Chief Burbank also has been active with a (very small) group of police chiefs lobbying against immigration enforcement and for amnesty.

Monroy-Bracamonte appears not to be your average illegal worker off on a weekend road trip with his wife. They were quite well armed for their trip to Sacramento, packing an AR-15 assault rifle and at least two pistols. Monroy-Bracamonte killed Sacramento County deputy Danny Oliver by shooting him in the forehead as he approached their car, which was parked in the lot of a Motel 6 that is notorious for criminal activity, and where they were registered as guests. They led officers on a six-hour chase, during which Monroy-Bracamonte killed detective Michael David Davis, Jr., and wounded two others before officers used tear gas to smoke him out of hiding in a house in Auburn, Calif.

Photographs reported to be of Monroy-Bracamonte suggest that he is a member of the criminal gang known as Mexican Pride and associated with the Sinaloa drug cartel.

Mexican Pride has been on ICE's radar screen for some time. Dozens of Mexican Pride members and associates have been arrested by ICE agents over the years, and the agency's arrest records show concentrations in Arizona, southeast Washington state, Colorado, and the Washington DC/Northern Virginia metro area. Mexican Pride members often have violent criminal histories, including assault, weapons offenses, drug dealing, burglary, robbery, and more. Federal gang intelligence reports say Mexican Pride is also involved in prostitution and human trafficking. The gang's membership includes Central Americans as well as Mexicans and U.S. citizens.

Unfortunately, ICE leadership under the Obama administration has pulled back on ICE's highly effective anti-gang programs in the last few years, and American communities – and families – are now paying the price.

ICE's National Gang Unit records show that 20 percent fewer gang arrests were made in 2013 than in 2012. And more and more of the ICE gang arrests have been occurring overseas rather than within the United States.

Whereas ICE agents once could work closely with local law enforcement agencies to target deportable gang members pro-actively with surge and street operations, now policies from ICE headquarters dictate that gang members are off-limits for enforcement until they are convicted of a serious crime. The result is that foreign gang members now can more easily avoid arrest, have little fear of immigration enforcement, are more likely to obtain benefits or relief from removal, are much less likely to face deportation, and are more likely to return after deportation. Liberal ICE detention policies have led to the release of gang members arrested by ICE investigators, which can enable them to escape prosecution. ICE agents also face limitations that are stricter than most other federal and local investigators on how they may use social media; such tools might well have enabled ICE to target Monroy-Bracamonte earlier.

So far ICE has been tight-lipped with information on Luis and Janelle Monroy-Bracamonte, referring questions to the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department. The following questions remain to be answered:

1 - Has Luis Monroy-Bracamonte had other encounters with immigration authorities since his removal in 2001?

2 - What are the circumstances of his 2001 removal? Did it follow another arrest, and which agency made that arrest?

3 - Did Janelle Marquez Monroy-Bracamonte (or anyone else) seek to sponsor Luis for a green card? Has he received any immigration benefit or exercise of prosecutorial discretion?

4 - Law enforcement agencies should be asked to disclose Monroy-Bracamonte's entire criminal history and record of civil infractions and charges.

5 - Does Janelle Monroy-Bracamonte have a criminal history?

6 - What identification documents did Monroy-Bracamonte provide to the officers who arrested him? Did they include a legally issued driver's license that he obtained in Utah or another state? Or did he use fraudulent documents?

7 - Did any Utah law enforcement officers ever inquire or investigate his identity or immigration status? If so, was he referred to ICE?

The answers to these questions may guide lawmakers and local law enforcement agencies to adopt, or reinstate, more effective enforcement practices that prioritize public safety over protecting criminal aliens.

Meth smuggler receives 5-year prison sentence

One of two suspects accused of trying to transport 22 pounds of methamphetamine through Klamath County received a five-year prison sentence Wednesday.

The other suspect’s sentence, whether it involves prison time or probation, has yet to be determined.

Sandra Guillen-Avila, 39, and Jeronimo Novoa-Leal, 24, were arrested in October 2013 by Oregon State Police (OSP) troopers after a traffic stop on Highway 97.

During a search of the vehicle utilizing an OSP drug detection dog, 22 pounds of crystal meth and $5,000 in cash was found. The illegal narcotic was stashed in several small bags secreted around the vehicle.

Novoa-Leal had apparently hired Guillen-Avila and paid her $1,000 to drive him from Riverside, Calif., to Washington, where the drugs would be sold. Guillen-Avila is listed as a Quincy, Wash., resident, and Novoa-Leal is noted to have lived in Antioch, Calif.

District Attorney Rob Patridge noted during the Wednesday morning sentencing hearing the bust might be one of the largest single methamphetamine seizures on a state highway in recent Klamath Falls history — maybe even across the state.

“It’s really important, I think, we send a message from this case that we will not tolerate this coming into our community,” Patridge said.

The specifics of whether the suspects would receive probation or prison time became a point of contention during the hearing. While both pleaded guilty this summer, how exactly they should be punished was not finalized until the day of sentencing.

Two pre-sentencing investigations were completed for Novoa-Leal, who pleaded guilty to meth possession and delivery July 16. One investigation recommended only probation, while the second recommended a 60-month prison sentence.

The 60-month (five-year) sentence was imposed by Judge Marci Adkisson. It was noted in court Novoa-Leal was in the country illegally and he would be deported to Mexico upon his release from prison.

Adkisson expressed her objections to anything other than prison for the suspects during the hearing.

“I think they’re liars, I think they’re both liars. Both these people are going to the penitentiary,” Adkisson said. “It’s just over the top that we would even consider not punishing this crime.”

Patridge seconded Adkisson’s statement in a press release.

“Judge Adkisson put an exclamation point on the sentencing this morning by telling the defendant that she knew he was lying and chastised him for failing to take responsibility,” Patridge said. “Judge Adkisson and I are on the same page. If you are going to use Oregon to traffick drugs, we’re not just going to turn you around and send you back home to Mexico on a one way ticket ... we are going to hold you accountable and send you to jail here in Oregon to pay the price for the crimes you have committed while illegally in the United States and here in Oregon.”

The judge did agree to postpone sentencing Guillen-Avila so her defense attorney could present more evidence on her character and her actual involvement in the incident.

Guillen-Avila pleaded guilty to meth possession and delivery, as well as possession of a forged instrument, in July.

“I do not believe she was an innocent victim here,” Adkisson said, allowing her sentencing hearing date to be set for 3 p.m. Oct. 23.

Patridge, in an interview after the hearing, said the street value of the methamphetamine located within the vehicle was more than $1.1 million. He noted, “These are definitely cartel-related drugs.”

Sheriff and State Advisor Border Summits

The Sheriff and State Advisor Border Summits were held consecutively on 11-12 and 12-13 September in El Paso, Texas.

State Representative Sal Esquivel, Morrow County Sheriff Ken Matlack and OFIR President Cynthia Kendoll represented Oregon at the conference.

Read a full report of the event.

Visit the OFIR photo gallery, as well.

Could we please stop the insanity?

Just when I think another illegal immigration insanity story won't surprise me, a news report like this is published.

I'll walk through this article and touch on the painful, high pitched points for those that may not "get it" at a glance.  Here goes:

Francisco Aguirre (an illegal alien), from El Salvador, took refuge Friday in a Northeast Portland church after he said federal immigration agents went to his home to detain him...

"I've been a leader in this community for so many years," Aguirre said. "I'm part of this community, and this is where I belong (no - he belongs in El Salvador). This is where I want to stay" (too bad).

Aguirre was deported to El Salvador in 2000 after a conviction for drug trafficking offenses.... (a real LEADER in this community - a drug dealer?), 

Aguirre came to the agency's attention again in August after he was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence (again, a real swell guy) in Clackamas County, ICE said.

Aguirre said he applied earlier this year for a U Visa ... The visa provides legal status to victims of certain crimes who help authorities investigate crimes (does that include the crimes HE commits?), according the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Office.

He acknowledged that he was deported 14 years ago...(and he should be deported AGAIN after serving time in prison for re-entering the country illegally)

Aguirre was involved in the Workers' Organizing Committee that went on to found Voz Workers' Rights Education Project, nonprofit organization that mostly helps male Latino (illegal?) immigrants find work in Portland (So, he helps other illegal? immigrants find work in Portland - it's against the law for an illegal alien to work in the US). He currently serves as the MLK Jr. Worker Center coordinator for the group.

Churches elsewhere in the country have been offering sanctuary (is this the intended use of your tithe contributions?) to illegal immigrants after President Barack Obama announced that he wouldn't take any executive action on immigration legislation until after the November election.

ICE agents do not make arrests in sensitive locations such as schools and churches (how handy), said Andrew S. Muñoz, a public affairs officer for ICE.

Aguirre, a father of three, said he plans to stay at the church for as "long as it takes."

"We all make mistakes," he said. "We all have the right to fix those mistakes."

(Let's review - Aguirre entered the country illegally, trafficked drugs, was deported, re-entered the country illegally, helps illegal aliens work illegally, is arrested on suspicion of DUI and claims "we all make mistakes and have the right to fix those mistakes."  When is he going to start?  Is he fixing them now - while hiding out in a church because he won't face up to the mistakes he has made already?)

Wow - what a guy - a real pillar of the community.  Let's keep him!  Better yet - let's CROWN him King!  I'm certain he thinks he's entitled to the title!

Portland activist seeks asylum in church to avoid deportation

Francisco Aguirre, a local labor activist originally from El Salvador, took refuge Friday in a Northeast Portland church...

"I've been a leader in this community for so many years," Aguirre said. "I'm part of this community, and this is where I belong. This is where I want to stay."

Aguirre was deported to El Salvador in 2000 after a conviction for drug trafficking offenses, ICE said in a statement. Aguirre came to the agency's attention again in August after he was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence...

He acknowledged that he was deported 14 years ago, but declined to comment further..

Aguirre was involved in the Workers' Organizing Committee that went on to found Voz Workers' Rights Education Project, nonprofit organization that mostly helps male Latino immigrants find work in Portland. He currently serves as the MLK Jr. Worker Center coordinator for the group.

Churches elsewhere in the country have been offering sanctuary to illegal immigrants...

ICE agents do not make arrests in sensitive locations...

Aguirre, a father of three, said he plans to stay at the church for as "long as it takes."

"We all make mistakes," he said. "We all have the right to fix those mistakes."

 

OFIR President participates in Border Summit

Cynthia Kendoll - OFIR President, just returned from an intensive weekend at The Border Summit.  A written summary of her visit to the border will be posted soon.

The conference was hosted by The Federation of American Immigration Reform (FAIR) in El Paso, Texas the weekend of Sept. 12 - 14.  Law enforcement officers and activists from across the country gathered to learn more about what's happening on our southern border.

Please visit the OFIR photo gallery.

 

Oregonians are affected by criminal invasion

The current ongoing immigration surge, call it an invasion, across the United States of America’s border with Mexico by persons who have illegally entered the country is really old news revisited to those who have been victimized of foreign national criminals in Oregon.

An unpublished July 1, 2014 report from the Oregon Department of Corrections (DOC) indicated there were 1,099 foreign nationals (criminal aliens) incarcerated in the state’s prison system...

What follows is a list of 15 Oregon counties whose County Circuit Courts adjudicated cases that sent the most criminal aliens (95.4 percent) to serve time in DOC prisons:

- 267 Multnomah, 24.3 percent of alien prisoners;
- 264 Marion, 24.0 percent of alien prisoners;
- 186 Washington, 16.9 percent of alien prisoners;
- 76 Clackamas, 6.9 percent of alien prisoners;
- 57 Lane, 5.2 percent of alien prisoners...

The types of crimes, the level of violence, being committed by aliens who have illegally entered the country against the state’s residents are the type crimes one might read about in an international newspaper or view on a television news program covering Mexico or third-world counties located in Central and South America or the Caribbean.

Here is how the 1,099 criminal aliens currently in the DOC prison population violently, brutally and mercilessly victimized the residents of this state:

- 199 sex abuses, 18.1 percent of alien crimes;
- 172 rapes, 15.6 percent of alien crimes;
- 161 drugs, 14.6 percent of alien crimes;
- 145 homicides, 13.2 percent of alien crimes;
- 103 assaults, 9.4 percent of alien crimes;
- 93 sodomies, 8.5 percent of alien crimes;
- 68 robberies, 6.2 percent of alien crimes;
- 44 kidnappings, 4.0 percent of alien crimes...

Focusing on the Americas and Caribbean, 976 of the 1,099 criminal aliens (88.8 percent) in the DOC prison system self-declared their citizenship from the following nations:

- 884 Mexico, 80.4 percent of prisoners;
- 34 Guatemala, 3.1 percent of prisoners;
- 15 El Salvador, 1.4 percent of prisoners;
- 11 Honduras, 1.0 percent of prisoners;
- 11 Cuba, 1.0 percent of prisoners...

Another element of foreign national crime that has affected the residents of this state is the cost to incarcerate criminal aliens in the state’s prisons; 1,099 alien prisoners cost the state’s taxpayers $34,930,835.80 per year.

Unfortunately for Oregonians, this seemingly unchecked wave of foreign national crime and violence has gone on in the state under watch of recalcitrant Washington D.C. politicians like Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden along with Representatives Earl Blumenauer, Suzanne Bonamici, Kurt Schrader, Peter DeFazio and Greg Walden; politicians whose political parties during their elected tenure in office at one time controlled all three elected branches of government (The Presidency, The Senate and The House of Representatives).

These congressional representatives have done nothing legislatively that has been passed and signed into law by President Barack Obama to stop the invasion of criminal aliens preying on the residents of this state.

With leadership comes responsibility, they as a collective group of law makers, it would be fair to say, have the blood of those victimized by alien criminals on their hands.

Oregon’s registered voters during Oregon’s November 4, 2014 General Election will have a chance to replace six of the seven politicians who have failed to protect citizens and resident aliens from the invasion of foreign national criminals, only Senator Wyden is immune from the voters’ wrath during this election cycle.

Along with the possibility of replacing their congressional representation, voters in the state will also have the unique opportunity in the fall to show their members of congress leadership on immigration legislation by voting “No” on Measure 88; legislation that would grant Driver Cards for those who cannot prove legal presence in the United States; legislation if it were to pass that could send a new wave of foreign national criminals into the state.

David Olen Cross of Salem writes on immigration issues and foreign national crime. He can be reached at docfnc@yahoo.com.

Big illegal marijuana garden busted in forest outside Ashland

Federal authorities and local police have snuffed out a roughly 5,000-plant marijuana grow about six miles south of Ashland in the Neil Creek drainage.

A U.S. Forest Service employee discovered the massive growing operation while hunting in January, according to a complaint filed Aug. 25 in the U.S. District Court of Medford.

Humberto Salgado-Salgado, 36, and Juan Albert Lopez-Moroyoqui, 50, two alleged illegal immigrants from Mexico, were arrested at the grow site when the Jackson County Sheriff's Department SWAT team raided the area on Aug. 18, the complaint states.

Forest Service Special Agent Robert D. Caruthers Jr. led the investigation and filed the complaint.

In the complaint, he said the site appeared to be a "Mexican style Drug Trade Organization grow."

While investigating the area in January, Caruthers found a marijuana drying area, a well-developed campsite, several terraced areas with plant holes, drip irrigation lines, open fertilizer bags and a garbage pit, the complaint states. He also recovered dried marijuana plants with attached buds, the complaint states.

From May until the August raid, Caruthers and county authorities kept tabs on the site, observing as people moved in and its plants grew and matured to about five feet tall, the complaint states.

The site is believed to have been in use since at least 2012, the complaint states.

While observing the site between May and the raid, Caruthers said he saw who he believes was Salgado-Salgado and Lopez-Moroyoqui dressed in camouflage tending to plants at the grow site, the complaint states.

According to an indictment filed Thursday in U.S. District Court of Medford, both men have been charged with conspiracy to manufacture marijuana and manufacturing marijuana.

Lopez-Moroyoqui has also been charged with being an illegal immigrant, having returned to the United States after being deported following a drug-related conviction, according to a press release from the Oregon Department of Justice.

Salgado-Salgado told Caruthers he was from Morelos, Mexico, and that the men had been living at the grow site for about three and a half months after having been transported there from Santa Rosa, Calif., by a person in a van, the complaint states.

"They had been given marijuana seeds in a bag and were initially walked into the grow site location," the complaint states.

Salgado-Salgado told Caruthers the men were expecting to get about a third of the value of the harvested marijuana, the complaint states.

The men are scheduled to be arraigned next week in U.S. District Court in Medford, court records show.

Man guilty of delivering heroin that killed Keizer woman

A 35-year-old man pleaded guilty to the delivery of heroin that resulted in the death of a 21-year-old Laurin Putnam, of Keizer.

Sergio Quezada-Lopez, of Mexico, appeared before a U.S. District Judge Monday and entered a guilty plea to conspiracy to distribute heroin that resulted in death, according to the Department of Justice.

Quezada-Lopez is scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 1. The maximum sentence is life in prison and there is a mandatory minimum of 20 years.

Putnam's father Ron said after his daughter's death that he would see things through until the end. Now he is one step closer.

"I'm glad to see that it's finally coming to fruition," Ron Putnam said.

The investigation into Putnam's death began in April 2012 when police officers found her dead inside her Keizer residence. The Oregon State Medical Examiner confirmed her death was caused by a heroin overdose.

In the four days following her death, officials made a number of arrests and held searches in Marion, Washington and Multnomah counties, and Vancouver, Wash.

An investigation allowed authorities to identify the final suspect in the distribution chain. From there, investigators continued to identify people involved and eventually moved six levels up through the chain of distributors to Quezada-Lopez, the DOJ said.

He is charged with large-scale conspiracy regarding distribution of heroin in Oregon, Washington, Colorado and Nevada. He was in charge of a network of houses in Portland and Vancouver, Wash. that were used to stash drugs and received orders for heroin, then direct its delivery.

Others involved in the conspiracy collected payments in cash and then transferred money to Quezada-Lopez, the DOJ said.

When officials searched the house, they found large quantities of heroin, along with methamphetamine and cocaine. They also found documentation, drug ledgers, weapons, packaging material and $20,000. In one location, a drug ledger contained Quezada-Lopez's fingerprints and a document had his picture. Officers listened to a phone conversation in which he described an amount of heroin to be delivered.

He was arrested April 20, 2012, less than a week after Putnam died.

Also arrested around the same time as Quezada-Lopez were Braulio Acosta Mendoza, Jose Romo Gonzalez, Jose Aldan Soto and Julian Hernandez Castillo.

Court records during early proceedings of the defendants said that the operation "yielded a yearly gross profit of over one hundred thousand dollars."

"It's nice to get some closure. I do feel a sense of relief that things are finally starting to falling in"to place," Ron Putnam said. "Ultimately I'll never have her back."

The Drug Enforcement Administration led the investigation, mainly through its Salem task force, along with Salem and Keizer police departments, the Marion County Sheriff's Office, Oregon State Police and other agencies around Oregon and Washington.

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