Meth Ringleader Pleads Guilty to Organized Crime

A man Kitsap County sheriff’s officials say ran a drug and weapons ring has pleaded guilty to leading organized crime. The Kitsap Sun reports 34-year-old Edgar Armando Perez pleaded guilty to the felony count Wednesday in Kitsap County Superior Court and faces 10 years to life in prison. According to the Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office, the West Sound Narcotics Enforcement Team began investigating Perez in January 2010 and found Perez led a drug trafficking organization that brought narcotics, mostly meth, from Mexico into Kitsap, Mason, Chelan, King and Pierce counties — often 20 pounds or more at a time. The investigation of the drug trafficking organization has led to charges against 30 people, including nine federal convections (with two more individuals indicted on charges) and 19 others convicted in Washington state courts, with prison sentences spanning between three and 12.5 years. Twenty-four of the 30 suspects resided in Kitsap County. Authorities seized more than 45 firearms, more than 32 pounds of meth (with a $500,000 street value), 100 pounds of marijuana (with a $250,000 street value), $70,000 in cash and stolen law enforcement equipment. Perez, a gang member known as “Gramps,” was already serving a sentence out of Chelan County for unlawful possession of a firearm when he was arrested for the leading organized crime charge. Various state and federal agencies have assisted in the investigation, which was supplemented by federal money given its scope.