Marines Reportedly Smuggled Drugs!

Marines Reportedly Smuggled Drugs!
Posted by FoM on December 13, 1998 at 20:21:50 PT
Money corrupts!
San Diego U.S. servicemen have smuggled Marijuana and Cocaine into California for drug rings, sometimes using their military training or positions to aid traffickers, the Los Angeles Times reported Sunday.
At least 50 Marines and sailors have been investigated or are under investigation for narcotics trafficking, military officials told the Times.That represents a fraction of the more than 100,000 personnel in the San Diego area, said Wayne Clookie, a special agent for the Naval Criminal Investigative Service.``To the best of our knowledge, these are isolated incidents,'' Clookie said in a written response to the newspaper. ``We have no information which would indicate drug smuggling is a widespread problem.''Although officials declined to provide specific case details, five involved Marines who allegedly drove narcotics through Camp Pendleton to bypass the U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint on nearby Interstate 5. The site is 60 miles north of Tijuana.U.S. Customs Service agents have investigated 10 to 15 cases of active-duty military men and reservists involved in narcotics trafficking, the Times said, citing an unidentified federal official.Federal drug agents also arrested some servicemen who allegedly were working for Mexican drug rings, records showed.Authorities said most of the rings had ties to the Arellano-Felix cartel of Tijuana, which brings tons of cocaine and marijuana into the United States.Among the key cases involving military personnel:- Seaman Jeffrey T. Baca was arrested March 20 at the border while trying to import more than 120 pounds of marijuana, according to Navy spokesman Capt. Gregg Hartung in San Diego said. Baca was reduced in rank and will be discharged after serving 12 months in the brig.- Marine Lance Cpl. Jason Allen Miller and a Mexican national were arrested on Feb. 9, 1997 for transporting 1,000 pounds of marijuana into the United States by using a rubber speedboat to sneak past Coast Guard and Navy radar. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to five years in prison.- In 1995, Marine Cpl. Yiluarde ``Jerry'' Pacheco was arrested after DEA officials alleged he belonged to a drug ring based in Yorba Linda.Authorities alleged that drug ring had links to the powerful Cali cartel in Colombia and had shipped up to 14 tons of cocaine from Southern California to other U.S. cities. Pacheco is serving a seven-year prison sentence for smuggling. 
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