Members of Multistate Drug Distribution Ring Also Indicted
DENVER—The Colorado Attorney General’s Office announced today that it has obtained indictments against The Silver Lizard, LLC, a Denver medical marijuana dispensary, and members of a multistate drug ring. According to the 59-count indictment alleging violations of the Colorado Organized Crime Control Act, the indicted individuals engaged in a pattern of racketeering and conspiracy to receive, buy, sell, deal, cultivate and/or distribute marijuana in Colorado and to distribute the marijuana in Arizona, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Mexico, Oregon, South Dakota, Tennessee Texas, Virginia and the District of Columbia.
“This indictment and its allegation that medical marijuana was sold out of the back door of a dispensary for distribution to other states is consistent with information gathered by a recent Rocky Mountain HIDTA survey of Colorado law enforcement agencies,” said Attorney General John Suthers. “It is becoming clear that as predicted in 2010 legislative hearings, Colorado is becoming a significant exporter of marijuana to the rest of the country.”
The individuals comprising the enterprise include: Tanner John Kimberlin, 29; Jeremy S. Crawford, 23; Kyle Abt, 26; and Leon Cisneros, 49. Under the Colorado Organized Crime Control Act, if convicted the individuals face sentences ranging from eight to 24 years.
Tanner John Kimberlin and Kyle Abt are accused of participating in the cultivation of marijuana at their individual Elbert County homes; acting as suppliers, and utilizing members of the enterprise
to assist in harvests.
Kimberlin is accused of transporting approximately 100 pounds of marijuana from Colorado to Iowa as part of the distribution ring. Also charged in the indictment is Leon Cisneros, owner of The Silver Lizard. Cisneros is alleged to have used his position as owner of The Silver Lizard to illegally sell dispensary marijuana to undercover law enforcement officers. Undercover officers specifically told Cisneros the marijuana was destined for sale to out-of-state college students.
Further, Cisneros is alleged to have diverted nearly $16,000 in state sales tax money from his marijuana dispensary sales. In April 2012, when a Colorado Department of Revenue employee confronted Cisneros about delinquent sales tax, he provided her with false information regarding total taxable sales made by The Silver Lizard.
Jeremy Crawford is alleged to be the central distributor who coordinated the majority of the interstate deliveries of the ring. The majority of the out-of-state drug deliveries were sent using the United States mail. He is also alleged to have grown marijuana in the basement of his home.
The Office of the Attorney General worked in conjunction with the South Metro Drug Task Force, the Colorado Department of Revenue Criminal Tax Enforcement Division, the United States Postal Inspection Service, and the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area task force to investigate the case and secure the indictments.
The Office of the Attorney General will prosecute the case in Douglas County District Court. The next court appearance is scheduled for September 28, 2012.