The British Columbia man was part of a ring that used helicopters to smuggle cocaine and marijuana across the U.S. border.
A Canadian man was sentenced to seven years in prison Friday for his involvement in a ring that used helicopters and snowmobiles to smuggle cocaine and marijuana across the U.S. border from 2007 to 2009, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
After fighting extradition for years, Sean William Doak of Vernon, B.C., pleaded guilty in December to a conspiracy charge in U.S. District Court in Seattle.
Federal prosecutors say Doak, 42, and several others arranged for loads of drugs to be smuggled across the U.S.-Canada border by truckers, hikers, snowmobilers and low-flying helicopters.
At various times, the ring smuggled marijuana, cocaine and ecstasy.
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The group used helicopters leased through a front company to fly hundreds of pounds of marijuana at a time into remote forest clearings in Washington state, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said. The pilots would meet drivers bringing shipments of cocaine up from the Los Angeles area, and fly that back into British Columbia.
One pilot, Sam Lindsay-Brown, committed suicide in the Spokane County Jail after he flew into a setup. Other members of the ring have been sentenced to prison terms ranging from 18 months to 10 years.