DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
District of New Mexico

For Immediate Release

Tuesday, April 18, 2017
James D. Tierney
, United States Attorney
Contact: Elizabeth M. Martinez

Albuquerque Man Pleads Guilty to Federal Meth Trafficking Charges

Defendant One of 104 Individuals Federally Charged as the Result of ATF-Led Investigation Pursued in Support of Federal “Worst of the Worst” Anti-Violence Initiative

ALBUQUERQUE – Joshua Sedillo, 30, of Albuquerque, N.M., pled guilty today in federal court to a methamphetamine trafficking charge.
Sedillo and his co-defendant Ramon Quezada, 32, were arrested during an ATF-led investigation that resulted in the filing of 59 federal indictments and a federal criminal complaint charging 104 Bernalillo County residents with federal firearms and narcotics trafficking offenses.  The investigation began in mid-April 2016, when ATF personnel from throughout the country joined forces with federal, state, county and local law enforcement agencies in New Mexico to combat the high rate of violent crime in the Albuquerque metropolitan area.  The investigators utilized a number of investigative techniques, including undercover operations, historical investigation and targeting of multi-convicted felons in possession of firearms.
The investigation was undertaken in support of a federal anti-violence initiative that targets “the worst of the worst” offenders for federal prosecution.  Under this initiative, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and federal law enforcement agencies collaborate with New Mexico’s District Attorneys and state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies to target violent or repeat offenders for federal prosecution primarily based on their prior criminal convictions with the goal of removing repeat offenders from communities in New Mexico for as long as possible.
Sedillo and Quezada were arrested in July 2016, on an indictment charging them with conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine on May 11, 2016, and Sedillo individually with distribution of methamphetamine on May 25, 2016.  According to the indictment, the offenses took place in Bernalillo County, N.M.
During today’s proceedings, Sedillo pled guilty to the indictment charging him with distributing methamphetamine on May 11, 2016 and May 25, 2016.  Sedillo entered the guilty plea without the benefit of a plea agreement.  At sentencing, Sedillo faces a mandatory minimum penalty of five years and a maximum of 40 years in prison.  Sedillo remains in custody pending a sentencing hearing which has yet to be scheduled.
To date, 43 of the 104 defendants have entered guilty pleas, including Quezada, and 15 have been sentenced.  The remaining defendants have entered not guilty pleas.  Charges in indictments are merely accusations and defendants are presumed innocent unless found guilty in a court of law.
This case was investigated by the Albuquerque office of ATF and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jacob Wishard.
Phoenix Field Division