The ring was busted when Jose Reynaldo Cardenas Jr., 20, of Porterville, Calif., was arrested on Feb. 23. He was taken into custody after he sold 222 grams of pure methamphetamine in two transactions involving an undercover officer in Caldwell last November and December.
He told officers he was part of a large organization that had brought 20 to 30 pounds of meth into Idaho every three days for the previous two years. Cardenas pleaded guilty in September to conspiracy and two counts of distributing meth. Senior U.S. District Judge Edward J. Lodge sentenced him Wednesday to 12 years in prison. He was also ordered to forfeit $100,000 in cash.
Lance Ryan Ward, 44, of Boise was sentenced to 11 years in a separate hearing before visiting Senior Judge William B. Shubb from California. Ward, who pleaded guilty to distribution of meth, bought a pound of meth from one of his co-defendants and sold half of it to an undercover officer. He and Joshua James Alford, 34, of Garden Valley, who was sentenced to 10 years in prison, were also ordered to forfeit $100,000 in cash.
Angelo Angel Rivas, 41, of Nampa, was also sentenced by Shubb to 10 years. He pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute meth and heroin. He was arrested in Boise after he traveled to Mexico to pick up a shipment of both drugs. Police found 1.5 pounds of meth and a pound of heroin hidden in the gas tank of his vehicle. He was ordered to forfeit $15,000 in cash.
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Rodolfo Hernandez Gonzales, 35, of Nampa, was sentenced by Shubb to five years. He admitted to selling two ounces of meth to an undercover officer in Nampa and pleaded guilty to distributing meth. He was ordered to forfeit $1,200.
The cases were jointly investigated by the Boise Police Department’s narcotics unit and the federal multi-agency Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force.