Federal agents seized many pounds of meth and heroin, along with thousands of suspected fentanyl pills, at a 10-acre property east of Arlington in mid-December 2020. (U.S. Attorney’s Office)

Federal agents seized many pounds of meth and heroin, along with thousands of suspected fentanyl pills, at a 10-acre property east of Arlington in mid-December 2020. (U.S. Attorney’s Office)

Snohomish County fentanyl ring members sentenced to federal prison

Aaron Alarcon-Castendea, 38, and Steven Delvecchio, 65, were sentenced Thursday nearly six months after their leader got 15 years.

ARLINGTON — Two more men involved in a Arlington-based drug trafficking ring have been sentenced to federal prison.

Steven Del Vecchio, 65, a drug distributor from Snohomish, was sentenced to nine years Thursday by U.S. District Judge John Coughenour. Aaron Alarcon-Castaneda, 38, a dealer from Chino, California, got six years.

Coughenour imposed the sentences due to the “enormous size of this drug trafficking organization.”

Alarcon-Castaneda and Delvecchio served “key roles” in the trafficking organization that distributed meth, fentanyl and heroin to King, Pierce and Snohomish counties, federal prosecutors alleged.

This comes nearly six months after ringleader Cesar Valdez-Sanudo, who buried drugs and hundreds of thousands of dollars throughout his Arlington property, was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison.

In December 2020, investigators seized of 143 pounds of meth, 15 pounds of heroin, 35,000 fentanyl pills, 24 guns and $778,000 across a dozen properties, court documents say. Investigators used a map found in an Arlington campground that seemingly showed where the drugs and money were buried.

That month, prosecutors indicted ring leader Cesar Valdez-Sanudo, 38, along with 10 other members of his organization. In June of last year, he pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, conspiracy to commit money laundering and carrying a firearm in relation to drug trafficking.

Alarcon-Castaneda was identified on a wiretap arranging a 44-pound meth shipment from California to Washington, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Seattle said. At his home, detectives found drugs “hidden in everything from laundry soap bottles to the kitchen garbage can.”
Del Vecchio is a known drug dealer in Snohomish County, according to prosecutors. The Snohomish man was caught on wiretap identifying himself as a dealer for Valdez-Sanudo. Law enforcement seized “nearly a kilogram of meth, several ounces of heroin and more than a thousand fentanyl pills” from his home, court records say.
While each of these men played a different role, such conduct was integral to spreading poison throughout our community,” Acting U.S. Attorney Tessa M. Gorman said in a press release.

Other ring members have already been sentenced.

Yvette Olguin, Valdez-Sanudo’s wife and ring money launderer was sentenced to 30 months.

Jose Valdez, Valdez-Sanudo’s cousin and drug distributor, was sentenced to nine years.

Paz, the courier, was sentenced to four years.

Wayne Frisby, a Marysville man and blind rapper who distributed the drugs, got six years.

Ana Pacheco also got six years.

Keith Silverson, another dealer from Tacoma, also got six years.

And Gabriel Vazquez-Ruiz, of Bothell, got 10.

More have pleaded guilty and await sentencing, including:

• Omar Vazquez-Limon, of Kent;

• Tracy Hawkins, of Gold Bar;

• Clint Schlotfeldt.

Maya Tizon: 425-339-3434; maya.tizon@heraldnet.com; Twitter: @mayatizon.

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