A Puyallup man convicted of running an Oxycodone distribution ring from tribal smoke shops was sentenced today to 20 years in prison.
A federal jury last year convicted Billy Miranda Flores, 42, of conspiracy to distribute Oxycodone, three counts of distribution of Oxycodone, possession of methadone with intent to distribute and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug-trafficking crime.
Federal prosecutors say Flores and his operation moved large amounts of drugs through the Indian Smoke Shop on Puyallup Tribal Trust Land in Milton and the Lil Red Smoke Shop on tribal trust land in Tacoma.
“The biggest challenge for any judge sentencing someone is distinguishing between dumb or ignorant defendants who need a break, and those criminals that are really bad,” U.S. District Judge Ronald Leighton said at sentencing. “I put Billy Miranda Flores among that (latter) group. He preys on people.”
Agents busted the ring following an 18-month investigation, the U.S. Attorney’s Office reported in a news release.
The Puyallup Tribe later closed both smoke shops.
Five others have been convicted in the case. Three have been sentenced to terms ranging from nine months to nearly five years. Two others are scheduled to be sentenced next month.