ROCK ISLAND, Ill. – Chief U.S. District Judge Sara Darrow has sentenced Gustavo R. Sandoval, of California, to 17 ½ years in prison for trafficking kilogram quantities of methamphetamine and marijuana to Knox County and the Quad-Cities area in 2018. Sandoval, 32, of Fillmore, Calif., was sentenced on Sept. 22, 2020. He has remained in law enforcement custody since his arrest on related state charges in October 2018.
In July 2019, Sandoval pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine. Sandoval’s co-defendant, Ryan D. Mehaffy, 32, of Maquon, Ill., was also sentenced on Sept. 22, to six years in prison.
According to court documents, the government presented evidence that Sandoval organized and led Mehaffy in a drug conspiracy involving shipments of kilograms of actual methamphetamine and marijuana from California to Central Illinois. Sandoval also traveled to Central Illinois on several occasions to threaten co-conspirators, collect debts, take drug orders, and to deliver drugs.
The Quad City Metropolitan Enforcement Group and the Drug Enforcement Administration investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Alyssa A. Raya and Donald B. Allegro represented the government in the prosecution.