Roughly nine months after his indictment on federal drug distribution conspiracy charges, Omar Briceno-Quijano was apprehended in Mexico.
Briceno-Quijano was allegedly part of a methamphetamine and heroin distribution ring operating in Montrose. The U.S. Attorney’s Office on Monday announced U.S. Marshals captured him Sept. 23 in Los Mochis, State of Sinaloa.
He was put on a flight to Houston, where he made an initial appearance, and is being transported to Colorado for further proceedings.
“As the old saying goes, the long arm of the law will eventually find you if you are a fugitive on the run,” U.S. Attorney Jason Dunn said, in the announcement.
“Thanks to the great work of the United States Marshal Service, we will find them even if they try and hide in another country.”
Briceno-Quijano was indicted in January, after a yearlong, multi-agency investigation into drug trafficking in Montrose. One day before the Montrose Police Department, Montrose County Sheriff’s Office, 7th Judicial District Drug Task Force and the Drug Enforcement Administration made arrests in and around Montrose, he left Colorado and was listed as a fugitive.
According to indictments, between January and December 2019, Briceno-Quijano and 12 others conspired to distribute and possess with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of actual methamphetamine, 500 grams or more of a mixture of a substance containing a detectable amount of meth, and less than 100 grams of heroin.
Since the indictments were handed down, codefendants Angelina Maestas, Namoi Vaughn and Joseph Davis have pleaded out their cases.
Davis and Vaughn, who are married, received several pounds of meth from unindicted co-conspirators and sold it, according to their plea documents, which state authorities seized 143.4 grams of pure meth from their Spring Creek home.
Davis was sentenced to 12 years in prison.
Vaughn, who pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge, is to be sentenced Nov. 2.
Maestas also pleaded guilty to conspiracy and to an additional charge of witness tampering. Her plea documents say she arranged for payments to be sent to Mexico for meth Briceno-Quijuano allegedly supplied.
Maestas’ sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 18.
The cases against codefendants Ofelia Lopez, Romeo Lujuan, Luis Alberto Ibarra-Tade, Jonte LeFlore, Dustin Debarris, Steven K. Jones, Frank Arroyo, Amanda Sumpter and Nicole Wickman are pending.
Katharhynn Heidelberg is the Montrose Daily Press assistant editor and senior writer. Follow her on Twitter, @kathMDP.