The leader of a drug trafficking organization in Ketchikan was sentenced to serve 87 months, which is seven years and three months, in federal prison for laundering drug money.
U.S. Magistrate Timothy Burgess imposed the sentence for Francisco Arca Seludo, 42, in U.S. District Court on Wednesday.
Federal prosecutors say Seludo was the leader of the group and laundered more than $400,000 in proceeds from distributing methamphetamine from January 2008 to November 2011.
That’s about 10 percent more money laundered than his younger brother, Herman Arca Seludo, 34, who was sentenced to 46 months in prison on Tuesday. A third person, Jeremiah Perez, 35, received 50 months in prison for his role also on Tuesday.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Jack Schmidt says the older Seludo would arrange for the transportation of methamphetamine from down south to Ketchikan, and then the drugs would then be sold or distributed by the defendant and others in the area.
Schmidt, who prosecuted the case, said Seludo personally and by directing others transferred the money through Western Union and MoneyGram to pay the drug suppliers.
Seludo also directed others to wire the drug proceeds in and outside of the United States in order to conceal and disguise the nature, location, source, ownership and control of the proceeds, Schmidt said in a written plea agreement.
Seludo was charged via felony information in May on one count of money laundering conspiracy, a federal crime that can carry up to 20 years in prison.
Seludo entered into a plea deal and pleaded guilty as charged in May. In exchange for his plea, prosecutors agreed not to prosecute him further on any of the related events.
Seludo declined to speak to the court when asked by the judge if he wanted to say anything.
Seludo’s attorney Paul Grant told the judge that his client would probably be deported after he serves his sentence since he is a green card holder. Seludo and his younger brother are from the Philippines.
Seludo has already served one year of his time.
• Contact reporter Emily Russo Miller at 523-2263 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.