Hillsboro man sentenced for drug trafficking, cockfighting
A Hillsboro man has been sentenced to more than 15 years in prison for his role in an international drug trafficking ring between Mexico and Oregon.
Daniel Ramirez, 43, was sentenced June 28 to 15 years and six months in federal prison, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Portland.
Ramirez was arrested at his home as part of a massive drug bust across Portland and Salem on Oct. 15, 2015, which saw 30 people arrested. Investigators found four guns in his house, along with ammunition, according to court documents.
Prosecutors said Ramirez led a large drug trafficking ring with ties to several drug cartels in Mexico, including Los Caballeroes Templarios — the Knights Templar Cartel. Ramirez was responsible for smuggling meth from Mexico into Oregon and elsewhere.
After his arrest, Ramirez admitted to receiving between five and 10 pounds of meth every few weeks from suppliers in Mexico, according to prosecutors.
Investigators with the FBI and the Portland-area Westside Interagency Narcotics team reportedly used wiretaps on Ramirez to identify more than 50 members of the criminal organization. More than half lived in Oregon, according to prosecutors.
During the raid, investigators found 26 pounds of meth and cocaine, nearly $100,000 in cash and 19 guns.
More than 20 of those alleged members have been indicted in state or federal court them on various drug charges.
Ramirez was also involved in a local cockfighting circuit, prosecutors said.
The 2015 raid exposed a cockfighting ring in the 21400 block of Southwest Farming Road, where investigators found more than 1,600 chickens, most of which were used for fight.
Prosecutors said Ramirez would enter roosters in fights across Oregon, attaching knives and other sharp objects to the birds' legs and feeding them vitamins to boost their performance. Cockfighting — which end when one bird dies or stops fighting — is a felony in Oregon with a five year prison sentence.
Last November, Ramirez pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute meth, possessing meth with intent to distribute and conspiracy to violate the Animal Welfare Act.
Ramirez has also been fined $100,000 and will serve five years' probation upon his release.