Scarborough man to forfeit items worth thousands, $300,000 cash in plea to drug charge

Posted Dec. 12, 2013, at 12:19 p.m.
Last modified Dec. 12, 2013, at 3:39 p.m.

PORTLAND, Maine — A 29-year-old Scarborough man agreed to forfeit more than $300,000 in cash and personal property worth thousands of dollars when he pleaded guilty Tuesday in U.S. District Court to a drug charge.

David Jones, aka Dave Kaos, 29, pleaded guilty to two counts each of conspiracy to distribute marijuana and money laundering. The forfeiture was part of his plea agreement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

The preliminary order of forfeiture signed by U.S. District Judge George Singal lists more than 60 items he bought with the proceeds from selling marijuana. It includes vehicles, televisions, jewelry, equipment from a Biddeford music studio and more than $300,000 in cash.

The vehicles included a 2008 Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck with an extended cab, a 2009 Silver Cadillac, a 1988 40-foot Silverton motorboat, a jet ski, a motorcycle, three all-terrain vehicles, a snowmobile and a Big Buck tandem trailer. The order also listed 60 items seized Oct. 2 from Jones’ music studio located at 2 Main St., Biddeford.

Once Jones is sentenced next year and it is determined no one else has an interest in the property, it will auctioned off. The U.S. Marshals Service administers the forfeiture program for the Justice Department.

Proceeds from the sale of items sold through the asset forfeiture program are used to fund law enforcement programs. Under the Equitable Sharing Program, the proceeds often are shared with the local and state law enforcement agencies that assisted in the investigation and arrests which led to the forfeitures.

Jones was arrested Sept. 5, 2012, in Ellsworth, Kansas, while overseeing the transport of marijuana to Maine in a car someone else was driving, according to the prosecution version of events to which he pleaded guilty. Court documents do not say whether he was charged in that state or when or if he was released on bail.

Jones was arrested and charged in U.S. District Court in Maine on Oct. 4. He has been held without bail since then.

Jones’ smuggling activities came to the attention of federal investigators in September 2012 with information provided by two unnamed defendants, according to court documents. In late 2011, one of the cooperating defendants began distributing marijuana for Jones, which he was sending to Maine using FedEx and the U.S. Postal Service.

Another cooperating defendant told investigators that he or she introduced Jones in September 2011 to a relative of the cooperating defendant who became Jones’ supplier. The packages were shipped to third parties in Maine.

The money laundering charge stemmed from Jones’ purchase of an interest in a business in June 2012, according to the prosecution version of events to which he pleaded guilty. Jones agreed to buy 10 percent of the unnamed firm for $250,000 in five installments. He paid in low denominations that were packed in vacuum sealed bags inside a backpack.

The business owner deposited the money in increments under $10,000 to avoid having the deposit reported to the Internal Revenue Service, the court document said. The business owner and Jones also purchased real estate together that is not described in court documents, but Jones’ name did not appear on the deed.

Jones faces on the conspiracy charge a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison due to a prior drug conviction in state court and a maximum sentence of life. He also could be fined up to $8 million. On the money laundering charge, Jones faces up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $500,000.

In his plea agreement, Jones waived his right to appeal his sentence to the 1st U.S. Court of Appeals in Boston if it is exceed by 12 1/2 years.

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