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August 10, 2021Denver, CO, United StatesNarcotics

Colorado man sentenced in narcotics distribution case

DENVER — A southern Colorado man was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison, followed by four years of supervised release, for possession with the intent to distribute methamphetamine.

Acting United States Attorney Matthew Kirsch for the District of Colorado and Eric Balliet, Deputy Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Denver made the announcement.

Felipe Nevarez of Alamosa, Colorado is a member of the Kings de Monte Gang and will remain in custody for the duration of his sentence.

“We will prosecute violent gangsters no matter where they operate in our state, said Acting U.S. Attorney Matt Kirsch. “Nevarez’s conviction and justly deserved sentence should serve as a warning to gangs in the San Luis Valley.”

“The distribution of meth in rural communities can have devasting affects that go beyond those associated with taking the drug,” said Eric Balliet, deputy special agent in charge, HSI Denver. “HSI and its law enforcement partners work tirelessly to identify, arrest and prosecute those involved in producing and selling this poison to keep our communities safe.”

According to court documents and facts presented at trial and sentencing, Nevarez was a leader in the violent Kings de Monte Gang operating in the San Luis Valley. On April 3, 2019, deputies with the Alamosa County Sherriff’s Department encountered Nevarez driving a black BMW near Alamosa and Monte Vista. He evaded law enforcement, reversing the BMW at top speed down a rural driveway. Nevarez got out of the car and fled into an open field.

After nearly forty-five minutes of searching, law enforcement found Nevarez hiding within arm’s reach of a large bag of methamphetamine and in possession of more than $16,000 in cash. At the time, Nevarez had several state warrants for his arrest. This federal conviction was Nevarez’s ninth adult felony, including three prior drug distribution convictions.

United States District Court Judge Robert Blackburn handed down the sentence Aug. 10, following Nevarez’s conviction at jury trial April 15. Nevarez was also ordered to forfeit over $16,000 in narcotics sales proceeds.

HSI, the Alamosa County Sherriff’s Department, the Alamosa Police Department, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) conducted the investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Jeffrey Graves handled the prosecution of the case.

HSI encourages the public to report any suspicious activity through its toll-free tip line at 1-866-347-2423 or by completing its online tip form. Both are staffed around the clock. From outside the U.S. and Canada, callers should dial 802-872-6199. Hearing impaired users can call TTY 802-872-6196.

HSI is a directorate of ICE and the principal investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), responsible for investigating transnational crime and threats, specifically those criminal organizations that exploit the global infrastructure through which international trade, travel and finance move.

HSI’s workforce of over 10,400 employees consists of more than 7,100 special agents assigned to 220 cities throughout the United States, and 80 overseas locations in 53 countries. HSI’s international presence represents DHS’s largest investigative law enforcement presence abroad and one of the largest international footprints in U.S. law enforcement

Updated: 08/17/2021