'Prolific' Madras meth dealer gets 11-year prison term

Miguel Lopez went by nickname 'Monster'

PORTLAND, Ore. - A 29-year-old Madras gang member and "prolific:" drug dealer who prosecutors say went by the nickname "Monster" has been sentenced to 11 years in federal prison on his sixth felony drug conviction, prosecutors said Friday.

Juan Miguel Lopez was sentenced on Monday to 135 months in federal prison by U.S. District Judge Marco A. Hernandez.

Last December, Lopez pleaded guilty to one count of possession with intent to distribute more than 50 grams of methamphetamine.

Lopez is in the custody of federal marshals. After his prison term, Lopez faces five years of supervised release, during which time he will be prohibited from associating with any gang members.

"Mr. Lopez was a dangerous, armed drug dealer who spread destruction throughout Central Oregon and Warm Springs," said U.S. Attorney Amanda Marshall. "The long prison term imposed by Judge Hernandez will protect the public from this prolific drug dealer."

Lopez, who went by the nickname "Monster," told police that he was associated with the Mexican Mafia.

Prior to this federal case, Lopez had five prior felony convictions for delivery or possession of drugs. Lopez also has a prior conviction in Jefferson County Circuit Court for reckless endangerment, based on his hurling a bottle at a woman and throwing gang signs at Cove Palisades State Park.

The federal conviction for possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine is based on a search warrant executed at Lopez's Madras home on Aug. 6, 2012.

During the raid, police seized about a half-pound of methamphetamine, a .45 caliber and .40 caliber semiautomatic handguns, ammunition, scales, drug packaging materials and $2,655 in cash. Lopez, who was on probation, was arrested that day.

An investigation by the Warm Springs Police Department's High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area ("HIDTA") Task Force revealed that Lopez had been selling drugs around the Madras and Warm Springs areas, prosecutors said.

Lopez admitted to police that the two handguns seized from his home belonged to him. Lopez told the police that he bought the guns from an unidentified person at the Indian Head Casino in Warm Springs.

The case was investigated by the Warm Springs Police Department's HIDTA Task Force. Assistant U.S. Attorney Scott Kerin prosecuted the case.

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