U.S. Attorney's Office - District of Oregon
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News Releases
Oregon Man Sentenced to 70 Months in Federal Prison for Detonating Explosive Device in Fred Meyer Store - 07/16/18

PORTLAND, Ore. – Monte Robin Kaija, Jr., 47, of Portland, was sentenced today to 70 months in federal prison for detonating a small explosive device at a Fred Meyer store in Southeast Portland, and later possessing a homemade metal pipe bomb.

According to court documents, on May 21, 2016, the Portland Police Bureau (PPB) received a report of an individual placing a small pipe bomb made of PVC in an aisle of a Fred Meyer store on SE 82nd Avenue in Portland. Portland Fire & Rescue were dispatched to assist PPB with their response. Kaija detonated the device shortly before police arrived on scene, causing damage to a single aisle. Nobody was injured in the explosion, and Kaija fled. While processing the scene, PPB officers identified several fragments of white plastic PVC pipe, pieces of white plastic PVC end caps, electrical tape, and a granular, power-like substance.

After analyzing the materials collected on scene, the Oregon State Police Lab notified PPB that a DNA profile had been collected from a small piece of electrical tape. The DNA profile was matched to Kaija. On August 31, 2016, PPB officers arrested Kaija in a motorhome on SE 96th Avenue in Portland, and discovered a homemade metal pipe bomb in his motorhome.  A certified bomb technician assigned to the Portland Metropolitan Explosive Disposal Unit responded to the scene and rendered the device safe. As a convicted felon, he was not allowed to possess the destructive devices.

Kaija previously pleaded guilty to two counts of possession of an unregistered destructive device in violation of 26 U.S.C. §§ 5841, 5861(d), and 5871 on December 12, 2016. Upon completion of his prison sentence, Kaija will be on supervised release for three years.

The PPB and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) investigated this case. It was prosecuted by Hannah Horsley and Paul T. Maloney, Assistant U.S. Attorneys for the District of Oregon.

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Attached Media Files: SENTENCING-Kaija-Final.pdf
Three Gypsy Joker Motorcycle Club Members and Associates Indicted for Murder and Kidnapping in Aid of Racketeering - 07/13/18

Club members accused of kidnapping, torturing and murdering a former club member and resident of southeast Portland

PORTLAND. Ore. – A federal grand jury has returned a four-count indictment charging three members and associates of the Gypsy Joker Outlaw Motorcycle Club (GJOMC) for racketeering, kidnapping and murder. The indictment was returned on June 28, 2018 and unsealed today.

The indictment was announced by Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General John P. Cronan of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division; Billy J. Williams, U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon; Darek Pleasants, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosive’s (ATF) Seattle Field Division; and Danielle Outlaw, Chief of Police of the Portland Police Bureau (PPB).

“The defendants allegedly violently kidnapped and murdered Robert Huggins to maintain and advance their positions in the Gypsy Joker Outlaw Motorcycle gang,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Cronan. “This indictment is an important step toward dismantling this violent gang, and should send a clear message that the Department of Justice will bring to justice those who commit such heinous criminals mes on our streets.”

“Pursuing organized criminal organizations and individual members that commit violent crimes and threaten public safety is a top priority for the Department of Justice and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Oregon,” said U.S. Attorney Williams. “We will use every law enforcement tool available to hold members of criminal organizations accountable for their violent and lawless criminal gang activity.”

“ATF remains committed to combatting violent crime organizations that endanger our communities,” said SAC Pleasants. “ATF will always stand shoulder to shoulder with our law enforcement partners to protect the public.”

“The Portland Police Bureau is proud to be a part of this collaborative effort that resulted in the indictment of people engaged in violent activity,” said Chief Outlaw. “Violent crime deeply affects our community and by working in partnership, we can use effective strategies to locate those individuals who are responsible for violence and hold them accountable.”

Mark Leroy Dencklau, 58, of Woodburn, Oregon; Earl Deverle Fisher, 48, of Gresham, Oregon; and Tiler Evan Pribbernow, 37, of Portland are charged with:

  • Murder in aid of racketeering in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1959(a)(1);
  • kidnapping in aid of racketeering, resulting in death in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1959(a)(1) and 18 U.S.C. § 2;
  • kidnapping resulting in death in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1201(a)(1) and (2);
  • and conspiracy to commit kidnapping, resulting in death in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1201(a)(1) and 1201(c)

in a case stemming from the June 30-July 1, 2015 kidnapping and murder of Robert Huggins, a former GJOMC member and resident of southeast Portland.

According to the indictment, GJOMC oversees several “support clubs” in Oregon and Washington, including the Road Brothers Northwest Motorcycle Club, Solutions Motorcycle Club, Northwest Veterans Motorcycle Club, High-Side Riders, and the Freedom Fellowship Motorcycle Club. The indictment alleges that the three men engaged in the violent actions leading to Huggins’ death for the purpose of maintaining and increasing their positions in the GJOMC criminal enterprise.

Dencklau, Fisher and Pribbernow made their initial appearances before a U.S. Magistrate Judge in Portland on July 9, 10, and 13, 2018, respectively.

An indictment is only an accusation of a crime, and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

This case was investigated by the PPB and ATF, with assistance from the Clark County, Washington Sheriff’s Office, the Oregon State Police, and the Oregon and Washington State Crime Labs. Leah K. Bolstad, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon, is prosecuting the case with Rebecca A. Staton, Trial Attorney for the Criminal Division’s Organized Crime and Gang Section.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. Attorney General Jeff Sessions reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

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Warm Springs Man Sentenced to 25 Years in Federal Prison for Molesting Minor Victim - 07/09/18

PORTLAND, Ore. – Lawren John Slockish, 36, of Warm Springs, Oregon, was sentenced today to 300 months in federal prison for molesting an 11-year-old girl.

“Sexual abuse of children casts a lifelong shadow on the health of the victims. The Warm Springs Multi-Disciplinary Child Abuse Team brings together tribal police and prosecutors, Child Protective Services, the Indian Health Service, and federal law enforcement authorities to collaboratively investigate these cases in a thorough, compassionate manner ensuring justice for these vulnerable victims” said Billy J. Williams, U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon.

“This victim showed great courage by coming forward to disclose the abuse, and for that we are very grateful. Her strength will allow us - law enforcement, the community and her family - to keep other children safe,” said Steve Goldman, Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Oregon. “The FBI, working with our tribal partners, will do everything to bring justice for the victim with a long-term goal of identifying and addressing child sexual abuse within our community.”

According to court documents, both Slockish and the minor victim are members of the Warm Springs Tribe. One day following the abuse, the child disclosed to her mother that Slockish had touched her breasts and tried to anally sodomize her. The minor victim’s mother notified the Warm Springs police. The child told Warm Springs police officers that the assault was not the first time the defendant had molested her and that he had done so in a similar manner approximately one year prior.

Slockish previously pleaded guilty to one count of abusive sexual contact with a child on January 19, 2017. Upon completion of his prison sentence, Slockish will be on supervised release for life.

The FBI investigated this case with the assistance of the Warm Springs Tribal Police Department. It was prosecuted by Paul T. Maloney, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon.

On March 3, 1994, the FBI initiated “Operation Safe Trails” with the Navajo Department of Law Enforcement in Flagstaff, Arizona. The operation, which would later evolve into the Safe Trails Task Force (STTF) Program, unites FBI and other federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies in a collaborative effort to combat the growth of crime in Indian Country. STTFs allow participating agencies to combine limited resources and increase investigative coordination in Indian Country to target violent crime, drugs, gangs, and gaming violations.

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Attached Media Files: SENTENCING-Slockish-Final.pdf
Portland Man Indicted for Attempting to Bribe ICE Deportation Officer - 06/29/18

PORTLAND, Ore. – Antonio Oswaldo Burgos, 48, of Portland, made an initial appearance today in federal court before U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul Papak.

The court unsealed a three-count indictment alleging Burgos, on three separate occasions, attempted to bribe a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) deportation officer. Burgos is accused of offering to pay the officer in order to facilitate the deportation of his estranged wife and daughter.

Burgos was released pending trial. A two-day jury trial is scheduled for August 28, 2018 before U.S. District Court Judge Michael H. Simon.

An indictment is only an accusation of a crime, and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

This case was jointly investigated by ICE’s Office of Professional Responsibility and Homeland Security Investigations.

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Attached Media Files: INDICTMENT-Burgos-Final.pdf
Hillsboro Man Sentenced to More Than 15 Years in Federal Prison For Distribution of Methamphetamine and Cockfighting - 06/29/18

PORTLAND, Ore. – On June 28, 2018, Daniel Ramirez, 43, of Hillsboro, Oregon, was sentenced to 188 months in prison for engaging in a conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and engaging in cockfighting. Ramirez was also ordered to pay a money judgment of $100,000 and will be on supervised release for five years upon completion of his prison sentence.

According to court documents, Ramirez was the leader of a large drug trafficking organization with ties to multiple Mexican drug cartels, including Los Caballeros Templarios (Knights Templar), and was responsible for smuggling significant quantities of methamphetamine from Mexico into Oregon and elsewhere. With the assistance of a series of court authorized wiretaps, law enforcement agents identified more than 50 members of the organization, 35 of whom reside in Oregon. 24 members were indicted in federal court on various drug-related charges. A number of additional defendants were also charged in state court.

On October 15, 2015, and interagency team of law enforcement officers conducted one of the largest takedowns in Oregon history, executing federal search warrants throughout the Portland and Salem, Oregon metro areas. Ramirez was arrested at his home in Hillsboro. During a search of his residence, agents found four firearms and ammunition. After his arrest, Ramirez admitted to receiving between five and ten pounds of methamphetamine every two-to-three weeks from suppliers in Mexico.

While investigating the drug trafficking operation, agents also discovered that Ramirez was heavily involved in cockfighting.  He would obtain roosters, attach knives and gaffs to their legs and enter them into wagered fights throughout Oregon.

Ramirez previously pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and one count of conspiracy to violate the Animal Welfare Act on November 27, 2017.

This case was investigated by the Westside Interagency Narcotics (WIN) team and the FBI. It was prosecuted by Scott M. Kerin, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon.

This case was brought as part of the Justice Department’s Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) program, the centerpiece of the department’s strategy for reducing the availability of drugs in the U.S. OCDETF was established in 1982 to mount a comprehensive attack on drug trafficking by disrupting and dismantling major drug trafficking and money laundering organizations. Today, OCDETF combines the resources and expertise of its member federal agencies in coordination with state and local law enforcement.

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Attached Media Files: SENTENCING-Ramirez-Final.pdf
Airsoft Guns Found in Vehicle
Airsoft Guns Found in Vehicle
Joint Law Enforcement Action Clears Entrances to Federal Facility in SW Portland (Photo) - 06/28/18

Update: A ninth individual was detained by federal law enforcement and is being processed at the Multnomah County Detention Center on the state charge of interfering with a peace officer.

PORTLAND, Ore. – At approximately 5:30am today, federal law enforcement officers arrived at the federal building at 4310 SW Macadam Avenue in Portland and dismantled obstacles blocking access to the facility.

“Freedom of speech and peaceful assembly are sacred rights enjoyed by all Americans and the U.S. Attorney’s Office is committed to protecting these rights. However, when individuals break the law by blocking employees and the public from accessing a federal facility, federal law enforcement will respond to restore normal business operations,” said Billy J. Williams, U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon.

“Federal law enforcement officers were able to effectively remove the demonstrators and blockades from in front of the entrances to the facility,” said L. Eric Patterson, Director of the Federal Protective Service. “We will continue to maintain a presence at the facility to ensure a safe reopening and enable employees and the public to safely conduct business at the facility.”

Seven demonstrators were taken into federal custody for failing to comply with directions given by law enforcement officers and blocking the building’s entrances. These violations are Class C misdemeanors under 41 C.F.R. § 102. The demonstrators were temporarily detained and cited by the Federal Protective Service, and then released. All were ordered to appear on the charges before a federal magistrate judge on September 7, 2018, in Portland.

An eighth individual was temporarily detained by federal law enforcement officers after approaching a police line in his vehicle. Shortly after the law enforcement operation began, the individual was spotted in a black SUV traveling near the federal facility. After spotting what appeared to be two rifles in the backseat of the vehicle, officers made contact with the individual and detained him without incident. Three airsoft guns were found in the vehicle. The individual was later released without being charged.

Beginning on June 25, 2018, demonstrators were issued four written and one verbal warning stating that it is unlawful to obstruct a federal facility. 41 C.F.R. § 102-74.390 and § 102-74.450 prohibit the obstruction of entrances, foyers, lobbies, corridors, offices, and parking lots of federal facilities.

Federal law does not restrict demonstrators from gathering on non-federal property adjacent to a federal facility. However, demonstrators are encouraged to review and adhere to all applicable state laws and local regulations.

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Idaho Man Sentenced to 25 Years in Federal Prison for Second Degree Murder - 06/28/18

PORTLAND, Ore. – Julian Darryl James Simpson, 25, of Lewiston, Idaho, was sentenced today to 300 months in federal prison following his conviction for second degree murder. Simpson, an enrolled member of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, pleaded guilty to this charge on October 27, 2017.

According to court documents, on March 19, 2016, Simpson and codefendant Victor Joseph Contreras attended a party on the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation. As a result of escalating disputes between suspected gang members at the party, Simpson and Contreras were asked to leave.

When other party goers left the house, Simpson and Contreras opened fire on them using semiautomatic pistols. Simpson fired at least one shot at a victim, striking him in the back of the head, and fired additional shots into a nearby car. Contreras, upon hearing the gunshots, fired more than 20 rounds into the crowd of party goers, striking a second victim just above the ankle. The first victim was medically evacuated to a nearby hospital but later died from his injuries. Simpson was arrested a week later in Lewiston with the firearm used to kill the victim.

Contreras pleaded guilty to assault resulting in serious bodily injury and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence on July 5, 2017. His sentencing is scheduled for July 19, 2018. 

The case was jointly investigated by the FBI and the Umatilla Tribal Police Department, and prosecuted by Scott M. Kerin, Jennifer J. Martin, Paul T. Maloney, and John C. Brassell, Assistant U.S. Attorneys for the District of Oregon.

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Attached Media Files: SENTENCING-Simpson-Final.pdf
Statement from the Federal Protective Service (FPS) - 06/28/18

PORTLAND, Ore. – At approximately 5:30am today, federal law enforcement officers initiated a law enforcement action to reopen the federal facility at 4310 SW Macadam Avenue in Portland.

For further information on this action, please contact Robert Sperling at (202) 420-1287 or robert.sperling@hq.dhs.gov.

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Notice to Vacate Federal Property Issued to "Occupy ICE PDX" Demonstrators in SW Portland - 06/25/18

PORTLAND, Ore. – At approximately 10:30am today, law enforcement officers from the Federal Protective Service (FPS) began distributing notices to vacate federal property to individuals participating in the “Occupy ICE PDX” demonstration at 4310 SW Macadam Avenue, in Southwest Portland.

“The U.S. Attorney’s Office is working with FPS and ICE to reopen the federal building on Southwest Macadam that serves many critical functions requiring public and employee access. We acknowledge the community’s concerns driving these demonstrations. While demonstrators have a lawful right to assemble and voice their concerns, blocking the building’s driveways or entrances is not permitted under federal law,” said Billy J. Williams, U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon.

It is unlawful under 41 C.F.R. § 102-74.390 and § 102-74.450 to obstruct the entrances, foyers, lobbies, corridors, offices and parking lots of federal facilities. Under these regulations, demonstrators are not permitted to obstruct the driveway or entrance of the ICE facility located on SW Macadam Avenue.

Federal law does not restrict demonstrators from gathering on non-federal property adjacent to a federal facility. However, demonstrators are encouraged to review and adhere to all applicable state laws and local regulations.

Flyers communicating the notice to vacate were distributed by federal law enforcement officers throughout demonstrators’ encampment and posted at the entrances to the ICE facility.

Individuals who continue to obstruct the entrance of this federal facility will be subject to arrest and prosecution in federal court under the above listed regulations.

FPS provides integrated security and law enforcement services to more than 9,500 federal facilities throughout the U.S. and is the lead law enforcement agency for this action.

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Statement from the Federal Protective Service (FPS) - 06/25/18

Portland, Ore. – At 3:30 A.M., a joint Department of Homeland Security team of law enforcement officers from the Federal Protective Service (FPS) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) entered the federal building at 4310 SW Macadam Ave., to secure government property.

The Federal Protective Service is the lead agency in the effort and any questions should be referred to Robert Sperling, Federal Protective Service Director of Communications at (202) 420-1287 or obert.sperling@hq.dhs.gov">robert.sperling@hq.dhs.gov.

Nigerian Leader of Nationwide Identity Theft and IRS Tax Fraud Scheme Sentenced to Federal Prison - 06/21/18

False federal tax returns filed using the personal identifying information of thousands of Oregon and Washington taxpayers

EUGENE, Ore. – On Wednesday, June 20, 2018, Emmanuel Oluwatosin Kazeem, 35, of Bowie, Maryland and Nigeria, was sentenced to 15 years in prison for leading a vast conspiracy to steal identities and file fraudulent tax returns. He was ordered to pay more than $12 million in restitution and will be subject to deportation when released from prison.

“Emmanuel Kazeem orchestrated one of the largest tax fraud schemes in our nation’s history. The complexity of this case and the incredible effort by law enforcement to bring those responsible to justice cannot be understated,” said Billy J. Williams, U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon. “I want to remind everyone that this case began when vigilant Oregonians notified the IRS when fraudulently tax returns were filed in their names. It only takes one tip to make a difference and bring down a complex criminal organization.”

“IRS-CI vigorously investigates criminals who band together to take advantage of our tax system. Today’s sentencing of Emmanuel Kazeem sends a strong message to those who seek to rob U.S. citizens of their hard earned tax dollars,” said Acting Special Agent in Charge, Brian Payne.

According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, in May 2013, a victim in Medford, Oregon notified the IRS that false federal and Oregon state tax returns were filed electronically using her and her husband’s personal identifying information (PII) including social security numbers and dates of birth.

An IRS investigation led to search warrants of residences in Illinois, Maryland, and Georgia and to numerous email and instant messenger accounts used by Kazeem and other co-conspirators. At a Chicago residence, agents seized approximately 150 prepaid debit cards and $50,000 in money orders. In Maryland and Georgia, agents seized more than 50 electronic devices, 40 money orders in amounts exceeding $29,000, $14,000 in cash and numerous prepaid debit cards containing over $12,000 in fraudulent tax refunds. The search warrants helped agents identify Kazeem as the leader and mastermind of the scheme.

The scheme resulted in the conspirators possessing stolen PII of more than 259,000 victims. Kazeem purchased more than 91,000 identities from a Vietnamese hacker that originated from an Oregon company’s private database. The company provided pre-employment and volunteer background checks for thousands of clients. Kazeem divided the identities into batches and shared them with other co-conspirators. They were in turn used to file fraudulent tax returns between 2012 and 2015.

In carrying out the scheme, Kazeem trained and directed his co-conspirators including his younger brother, Michael Oluwasegun Kazeem, to use stolen PII to obtain thousands of electronic filing PINs to bypass IRS authentication procedures. They acquired over 19,500 E-File PINS during the course of the conspiracy. Kazeem also used taxpayers’ PII to gain unauthorized access into many taxpayers’ IRS transcripts, which contain sensitive personal financial information. Conspirators also used pre-paid debit cards with the victims’ stolen identities to receive direct electronic tax refund deposits from the IRS.

In total, Kazeem was linked to 10,139 fraudulent federal tax returns attempting to get over $91 million dollars in refunds and successfully receiving over $11.6 million dollars. Refunds were withdrawn from the debit cards and at least 2,000 wire transfers totaling over $2.1 million dollars were sent to Nigeria. Over 700 of those wire transfers, totaling more than $690,000, were directly linked to Kazeem.

Kazeem used the conspiracy windfall to place a nearly $200,000 down payment on a newly constructed house and to purchase a $175,000 townhouse, both in Maryland. His average monthly credit card payment during 2012 to 2015 was over $8,300. Kazeem also attempted to use his ill-gotten funds to develop a $6 million dollar, 4-star hotel in Lagos, Nigeria.

In May 2015, Kazeem transferred the townhouse to his sister in Nigeria for $10 and included her on the deed to his Maryland residence, also for $10. He was arrested one day later.

IRS agents determined Kazeem had no verifiable sources of income between 2012 and 2015. In order to disguise the source of the fraudulent refunds, he listed sources of income from bogus employers in reports to both the IRS and immigration authorities. After entering the United States on a student visa from Nigeria, Kazeem engaged in marriage fraud to evade immigration laws. In April 2014, while leading the tax fraud scheme, he filed for naturalization under the Immigration and Nationality Act. Based on the false information provided to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, he was approved. The same year he personally participated in filing over 1,445 fraudulent federal tax returns and received over $3,385,000 from returns paid out by the IRS.

Kazeem was convicted by a federal jury on 19 counts, including mail and wire fraud, aggravated identity theft and conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, in Medford on August 4, 2017. Five other co-conspirators, Oluwaseunara Osanyinbi, Oluwatobi Dehinbo, Lateef Animawun, Oluwamuyiwa Olawoye and Michael Kazeem, previously received federal prison sentences for their roles in the same conspiracy.

This case results from a joint investigation by IRS-Criminal Investigation, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and Homeland Security Investigations with support provided by the Department of Treasury, Inspector General for Tax Administration, the U.S. State Department, and the Oregon Department of Revenue Policy and Systems Unit. The case is being prosecuted by Byron Chatfield and Gavin Bruce, Assistant U.S. Attorneys for the District of Oregon.

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Attached Media Files: SENTENCING-Kazeem-Final.pdf
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Portland Couple Accused of Interstate Distribution of Marijuana and Firearms Crimes (Photo) - 06/20/18

PORTLAND, Ore. – Isaiah Lee Holt, 30, and Marjorie Livingston, 37, residents of Portland, were charged today in a five-count indictment alleging the couple engaged in a conspiracy to distribute marijuana and illegally purchased and possessed firearms.

Holt is charged with one count each of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute marijuana, possession with intent to distribute marijuana, possession with intent to distribute cocaine, and felon in possession of a firearm.

Holt made an initial appearance today in federal court before U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul Papak. He will appear at an arraignment and detention hearing on June 21, 2018.

Livingston is charged with one count of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute marijuana and one count of making false statements during the purchase of a firearm. She is expected to make her first appearance before a federal magistrate judge on or before June 22, 2018.

According to court documents, in February 2018, Livingston is alleged to have illegally purchased a firearm for Holt, a convicted felon, at a licensed federal firearms dealer located in Portland.

ATF agents obtained a search warrant on Holt and Livingston’s NE Portland residence. On April 4, 2018, while surveilling Holt and the residence, agents contacted Holt and conducted a search of his person. Holt possessed two cell phones, two bundles of cash, two sets of keys, and seven small baggies of cocaine weighing approximately 11.5 grams.

Later the same day, agents conducted a search of the residence where they found materials consistent with drug trafficking including digital scales, small baggies, and Inositol, an agent commonly used for “cutting” cocaine.  Subsequent searches of the residence revealed a locked safe containing $46,100 in cash, two large plastic totes containing approximately 14 pounds of marijuana, U.S. Postal Service mailing labels, a heat sealer and food saver bags. Agents also found a Ruger AR-556 rifle, a Taurus 9mm pistol and a loaded M&P Shield .40 caliber firearm with an attached Crimson Trace laser.

Searches conducted of Holt and Livingston’s phones revealed numerous text and picture messages referencing marijuana and bank deposits. Messages were exchanged with phone numbers in North Carolina, Georgia, Texas and Florida. These messages included photos of bulk marijuana, shipping receipts, and bank deposit receipts.

An indictment is only an accusation of a crime; defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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Seattle Man Pleads Guilty to Fraud Conspiracy Involving Former Oregon Department of Energy Employee - 06/20/18

PORTLAND, Ore. – Martin J. Shain, 61, of Seattle, Washington, pleaded guilty today to one count each of conspiracy to defraud the U.S. and tax evasion.

According to court documents, between June 2012 and March 2015, Shain and Joseph Colello, a former employee of the Oregon Department of Energy’s (ODOE) Business Energy Tax Credit (BETC) program, maintained a secret business relationship whereby the two would personally profit from the sale and purchase of Oregon BETCs.

Shain and Colello devised a plan whereby Colello would give Shain the names of BETC sellers and interested buyers—information he had access to as an ODOE employee. Colello would then contact the sellers and buyers to negotiate credit transfers, but made it appear as though the Shain had brokered the deals. Shain created a company in the name of his relative in order to receive commission payments from the sellers of the tax credits and to conceal their earned income from the IRS. Shain charged sellers a 1-2% fee, undercutting brokers who typically charged a 10% fee for facilitating similar transfers. Colello would receive a portion of this fee as a kickback.

Between 2012 and 2015, Shain deposited over $1.3 million in income from the commissions charged to sellers of BETC credits. He would transfer a portion of these funds into a personal account from which he would purchase and issue biweekly cashier’s checks payable to Colello. Over the course of the conspiracy, Shain purchased and issued approximately 58 cashier’s checks to Colello or Colello’s girlfriend. In total, Colello received more than $300,000 in bribe payments for his role in the scheme. Shain failed to report more than $1.34 million in income received brokering tax credit sales on four income tax returns between 2012 and 2015.

Colello pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to engage in monetary transactions in property derived from specific unlawful activity, one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States, and one count of filing a false income tax return on March 15, 2018. On April 3, 2018, he was sentenced to 60 months in prison and was ordered to pay more than $81,000 in restitution.

Shain faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years of supervised release on each charge. He will be sentenced on September 20, 2018 before U.S. District Court Judge Robert E. Jones.

The case was investigated by IRS Criminal Investigation and the FBI and prosecuted by Claire M. Fay and Scott E. Bradford, Assistant U.S. Attorneys for the District of Oregon.

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Attached Media Files: CHANGE_OF_PLEA-Shain-Final.pdf
Former Oregon State University Student Charged for Threatening Campus Shooting - 06/20/18

EUGENE. Ore. – Christopher Adam Strahan, 22, a resident of Corvallis, Oregon, was indicted today for threatening a campus shooting at Oregon State University (OSU).

The indictment alleges Strahan threatened to shoot classmates at OSU in a series of tweets on February 27, 2018. He is charged with a single count of making threatening communications in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 875.

Strahan was previously detained as a flight risk and danger to the community when he made his initial appearance in federal court on a criminal complaint on March 27, 2018. Strahan will be arraigned on the indictment on June 27, 2018 before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jolie A. Russo.

An indictment is only an accusation of a crime, and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Anyone who witnesses imminent threats of violence in any form made via internet or another means should call 9-1-1 immediately. Non-emergency tips can be submitted by contacting the FBI’s Portland Field Office at (503) 224-4181 or visiting the SafeOregon website at www.safeoregon.com.

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