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State and Federal Officials Arrest 12 in Major Drug Bust

Posted by Steve Karimi | May 15, 2018 | 0 Comments

A single 2017 traffic stop has led to a large drug bust in Tacoma, Washington. In all, twelve Washington State residents are in custody after law enforcement agencies executed dual busts in the South Sound area. This bust is related to the March 2018 arrests in which over 20 people were arrested. According to law enforcement officials, this bust completes a takedown of two of Washington's largest drug rings in an effort that began over a year ago.

The spark for the series of major busts was lit in March 2017 when a vehicle carrying 25 pounds of methamphetamine was stopped and seized. Following this initial arrest, similar vehicle stops were made which led law enforcement to the existence of both drug rings. A series of wiretaps gave law enforcement the evidence they needed to execute the busts.

The bust this month led to the seizure of 22 pounds of methamphetamine, one pound of heroin, $48,000 in cash, and over 40 guns of varying sizes and types. In all, more than 150 law enforcement officers participated in the arrests that spanned multiple homes in the South Sound area. The busts were a joint effort between state and local officers, including the Tacoma DEA and the Tahoma Narcotics Enforcement Team. The Tahoma team is made up of the Washington Department of Corrections, the Pierce County Sheriff's office, and several local police departments.

The Department of Justice was quick to celebrate the success of the large operation. “Once again, federal, state, and local law enforcement partners have come together to address the drug and gun crime plaguing communities in the South Sound,” announced U.S. Attorney Annette Hayes in a written statement. “The two groups arrested today have been charged with serious crimes involving methamphetamine, heroin, and guns. This is… the beginning of the process to hold them to account and keep our communities safe.”

Methamphetamine Possession in Washington State

Methamphetamine use continues to rise in Washington State and across the country. A 2017 study shows that meth usage in high school students increased nationally. Inevitably, drug arrests increase at a similar rate that meth usage rises. In Washington, a charge of possessing methamphetamine is referred to as a VUCSA. This acronym stands for Violation of the Uniform Controlled Substance Act.

Penalties for a VUCSA charge can be severe. Possessing any amount of amphetamine is a felony charge, but the potential penalties increase with the amount of drugs seized.

For crimes involving less than 2 kilograms of methamphetamine:

  • A maximum of 10 years of incarceration, or
  • A maximum fine of $25,000, or
  • A combination of both imprisonment and fines

For crimes involving 2 kilograms or more of methamphetamine:

  • A maximum of 10 years of incarceration, or
  • A maximum fine of $100,000, plus an additional $50 for every kilogram more than 2, or
  • A combination of both imprisonment and fines

Contact a Seattle Washington VUCSA Lawyer

If you are facing a VUCSA charge in the Seattle area, you should contact an attorney with experience in defending VUCSA cases. When you're ready to prepare your defense and learn about your options, contact The Law Offices of Steve Karimi to set up a free consultation.

About the Author

Steve Karimi

Steve Karimi attended Pepperdine University School of Law. After graduation he worked as a prosecutor in Seattle where he gained valuable insight to the criminal justice system. Attorney Karimi uses his experiences as a prosecutor everyday only now he fights for the justice of those accused.


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