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News / Clark County News

Vancouver men indicted on federal drug trafficking charges

March arrest, stash house search discovered 7 pounds of fentanyl, weapons

By Griffin Reilly, Columbian staff writer, and
The Columbian
Published: April 18, 2024, 1:25pm

Two Vancouver men were indicted Wednesday on federal charges of drug trafficking, conspiracy and illegal weapons possession, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for Western Washington.

Juan Onofre Flores Carrillo, 48, and Daniel Valenzuela Ayala, 23, were arrested last month following a yearlong investigation into local sales of fentanyl, methamphetamine and high-powered firearms.

According to the criminal complaint, Flores Carrillo — known as El Cholo — sold 3,000 fentanyl pills to an informant, as well as a pound of crystal methamphetamine and firearms on other occasions.

On March 13, after Flores Carrillo sold 10,000 fentanyl pills, he was arrested by law enforcement, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Searches at a “stash house” tied to both men found “large amounts of drugs,” including 7 pounds of fentanyl and 43 pounds of methamphetamine, as well as an AK-47 with a grenade launcher attached. Valenzuela Ayala was the only occupant of the stash house and was arrested, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

Both men are citizens of Mexico and do not have legal status in the United States, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

The two are scheduled to be arraigned April 29.

Both men are charged with conspiracy to distribute narcotics and possession of controlled substances — fentanyl and methamphetamine — with intent to distribute.

Flores Carrillo is also charged with three counts of distributing fentanyl, one count of attempting to distribute fentanyl, one count of distributing methamphetamine and one count of the use of a firearm in relation to a drug trafficking crime.

The drug trafficking charges in this case are punishable by a minimum of 10 years in prison and up to life in prison. The possession of a firearm charge is punishable by a mandatory minimum of five years in prison consecutive to another sentence imposed in the case, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

The case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Vancouver Police Department, Clark County Sheriff’s Office Special Investigation Unit and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.