According to a report by our news partners The Seattle Times, the Ballard man who pleaded guilty to selling marijuana to local school students last year was sentenced to 30 months in prison on Monday.
Surveillance by undercover police last April revealed that Alejandro Antonio Castillo, 51, was selling pot to local students from Ballard High School and Whitman Middle School. According to The Seattle Times report, a federal complaint revealed that in one three-hour period on April 5, 2013, officers watched “approximately 18 teenagers appearing to, between the ages of 14 and 17, go to the Castillo residence, staying just minutes before departing.”
The My Ballard team covered the initial story when, on April 24, 2013, SPD served Castillo with a search warrant and seized approximately 1,200 grams of suspected marijuana including approximately 99 joints, nine trays of suspected marijuana brownies, four shotguns, one rifle, six handguns, and $4,755 in cash.
In December last year, Castillo was charged with conspiracy to distribute marijuana, two counts of distribution of marijuana and possession of marijuana with intent to distribute.
“As Washington moves forward with regulated marijuana, it is critical that we enforce the prohibition on sales to children and on those who use guns to protect their illegal activity,” said U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan. “This defendant was selling to minors as young as 13 and had previously demonstrated his willingness to use guns to protect his drug business. The mix of drugs and guns is dangerous for the whole community, including kids who could show up at the door during a drug related robbery.”
According to The Seattle Times, Castillo pointed to being behind on bills as the reason for selling the marijuana to local children. He reportedly defended his actions, insisting he would never sell to anyone under 13.
At the sentencing Judge James L. Robert dismissed Castillo’s claims. “It is necessary that we get out the message: regardless of legalization, you do not sell drugs to minors,” Judge Robart said.