Trial begins in major drug trafficking case - News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Trial begins in major drug trafficking case

by KUAM News

by Mindy Aguon

GUAM - After three days of jury selection, a jury has been empanelled and today marked day one in the trial of Mateo Sardoma Jr., Rudy Sablan, and Maria Edrosa.
Assistant US attorney Fred Black described Sardoma as the "kingpin of dope on Guam", Sablan as the "chief enforcer and drug dealer" and Edrosa as the co-conspirator and co-distributor who handled all of the money.

During opening statements, Black said Sardoma began using and buying drugs in 2008 and worked his way to find key people in the drug business to create "a vast empire in a short time." Black says the evidence during the trial will show that Sardoma brought in approximately 10 pounds or 1.5 million dollars worth of methamphetamine despite representing on customs declarations when he arrived to Guam that he earns less than 16 thousand dollars a year. He told jurors that Sardoma made 200 thousand dollars off every pound and dealt in cash. The government intends to call 20 people to testify against Sardoma.
Defense attorneys for the three asked jurors to listen to the testimony of the witnesses and keep in mind that many of them have been promised lesser sentences for their cooperation with authorities and testifying in the case. Elizabeth Aguon was the government's first witness testifying about different encounters she had with Sardoma and introductions she made with other drug dealers, Henry Quintanilla and Paul Perez. Cross examination will begin on Monday when the trial resumes at nine in the morning.


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