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How Not to Launder Drug Money


Here’s one way not to launder money for a million-dollar drug ring: Hide the drugs among collector’s comic books—like Superman and Batman, who both loved busting greedy thugs. Investigators seized at least $500,000 worth of comic books when they arrested Aaron and Alfonzo Castro, the ringleaders of a massive methamphetamine ring in which 41 suspects have been handed indictments (via 9News). “It appeared as [though] they were working on a startup company for high-end comic books,” Adams County District Attorney Don Quick says, adding 
that one of the comics was worth about $3,500. The drug ring smuggled “multiple-pound quantities” of meth from as far away as Mexico—as much as 100,000 doses per month each week for possible distribution in the Denver area, according to the Fort Collins Coloradoan. The enterprise was massive, utilizing women as drug mules, reports the Denver Daily News. One suspect, Juan Conrad Velazquez, was apparently the knuckle-man, allegedly hired to keep the money flowing. According to an indictment: He “utilized threats and coercive behaviors to collect money owed to the organization.” Although meth labs are on the decline in Colorado, they might resurface now that users and dealers have discovered a “simple, cheaper method to cook,” a recipe called “shake-and-bake,” writes The Denver Post.

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