Indy drug trafficking organization leader receives 30-year sentence

File image/CBS4

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.– A man who U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) officials say was the leader of a drug trafficking and money laundering organization that operated out of California and Indiana has received his sentence.

Ricardo Ochoa-Beltran, 30, of San Mateo, California, was sentenced to 30 years in federal prison. Starting in early 2016, Ochoa-Beltran distributed methamphetamine, heroin and cocaine in the Indianapolis area. He was arrested on July 17, 2017 and pleaded guilty to drug trafficking and money laundering charges.

“Members of drug trafficking organizations, such as the one led by Ochoa-Beltran, who choose to peddle drugs into Indianapolis neighborhoods will be identified and prosecuted to the full extent of the law,” said U.S. Attorney Josh Minkler. “The U.S. Attorney’s Office is committed to prosecuting those individuals involved in drug trafficking organizations and dismantling those organizations in an effort to keep our communities safe.”

Ochoa-Beltran’s drug trafficking organization got drugs shipped into Indiana from California, authorities say. Thousands of dollars’ worth of these drugs were intercepted by police. He laundered the money through 30 different bank accounts and sent wire transfers to Mexico.

Cash was also smuggled across the border in bulk, according to the DOJ. In total, the organization laundered more than $1 million.

“The sentencing of Ochoa-Beltran to 30 years in federal prison puts all violent drug trafficking organizations on notice that they will be held accountable for their disgraceful conduct and illegal activities,” said DEA Assistant Special Agent in Charge Michael Gannon. “Throughout the course of this investigation, agents seized over 20 firearms and multiple pounds of methamphetamine from Ochoa-Beltran and his associates. DEA remains committed to protecting fellow Hoosiers by relentlessly pursuing drug dealers who prey on our communities. DEA would like to thank their state, local, and federal partners for dismantling this highly sophisticated organization. Today, Mr. Ochoa-Beltran paid a debt no drug dealer ever wants to pay; he lost his freedom!”

After he’s released, Ochoa-Beltran will serve five years of supervised release.

Other defendants in the case received these sentences: Joel Alvarado-Santiago, 90 months; Miguel Lara-Leon, 260 months; Angelica Guzman-Cordoba, 240 months; Cesar Salgado, 140 months; Megan Castleton, 90 months; Bryan Stocker, 60 months; Lissa Garcia, 46 months; and Roberto Martinez-Hernandez, 18 months’ imprisonment.

A photo of Ochoa-Beltran was not provided.

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