DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
District of Kansas

For Immediate Release

Tuesday, February 5, 2019
Stephen McAllister
, United States Attorney
Contact: Jim Cross

KCK Woman Pleads Guilty In Mexican Methamphetamine Conspiracy

KANSAS CITY, KAN. – A local woman pleaded guilty today to being part of a drug ring that distributed methamphetamine from Mexico in the Kansas City metro area, U.S. Attorney Stephen McAllister said.
Karen Ortega, 41, Kansas City, Kan., pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine from premises in which children reside. In her plea, she admitted working out of her home in the 3000 block of North 34th Street in Kansas City, Kan., where she and her minor children lived. A search warrant at the residence turned up approximately 20 pounds of methamphetamine, 1.8 pounds of heroin and more than $230,000 in cash.
In her plea, she admitted federal investigators had her under surveillance when she met another conspirator in a Wal-Mart parking lot at 10824 Parallel Parkway and sold almost two pounds of methamphetamine for $4,500.
Sentencing is set for May 7. She faces a penalty of not less than 10 years in federal prison and a fine up to $10 million. McAllister commended the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Assistant U.S. Attorney Sheri Catania for their work on the case.
Kansas City Field Division