US Indicts Dozens of Drug Trafficking Suspects Linked to White Supremacists
A grand jury in the United States has indicted 27 people for drug trafficking, many of whom have links to the “Aryan Family,” a white supremacist prison gang, the Office of the Attorney General said on Monday.
Over five days, 24 of the defendants have been detained in Washington and Arizona, while the remaining suspects have already been in custody.
U.S. Attorney Nick Brown stated that having people who are associated with Aryan prison gangs distributing drugs and using guns in the community poses a significant threat to the safety and well-being of that community.
The alleged leader of this drug trafficking organization, Jesse James Bailey, is also a prominent member of the Aryan Family prison gang. According to the indictment, Bailey trafficked large amounts of fentanyl, methamphetamine, and other drugs in Washington, Idaho, and Alaska.
Bailey and other defendants had detention hearings in Tacoma last Monday.
According to Richard Collodi, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI's Seattle field office, some of the suspects were operating the drug organization from prison.
During last week’s takedown, in which about ten SWAT teams and more than 350 law enforcement officers were involved, officers seized 177 firearms, over ten kilos of methamphetamine, 11 kilos of fentanyl pills and over a kilo of fentanyl powder, three kilos of heroin, and over US$330,000 in cash in Washington and Arizona.
Before this latest takedown, during the year-long investigation, authorities seized 830,000 fentanyl pills, several kilos of fentanyl powder, heroin and cocaine, over 100 kilos of methamphetamine, nearly $400,000 in cash, and 48 firearms.
DEA Seattle’s Acting Special Agent in Charge Jacob Galvan described the quantity of narcotics seized as “shocking,” noting that the fentanyl alone was sufficient to kill the entire population of Tacoma and Seattle, which is almost one million people, with enough left over to harm another half-million.
Congresswoman Marilyn Strickland expressed her appreciation and gratitude towards the U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Attorney Nick Brown, and all law enforcement agencies involved in the indictment of dozens white supremacists with ties to the Aryan Family.