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Three Las Vegas men indicted for carrying cocaine into Alaska

Jerzy Shedlock

An Anchorage federal jury has indicted three Las Vegas men for shipping at least 11 pounds of cocaine from Nevada to Alaska since 2012.

Daren D. Cole, 47; Dewane E. Blue, 37; and Bryan M. Bledsoe, 36, have been charged with conspiring to distribute the drug, according the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Alaska.

The indictment against the men alleges that for two years, Blue obtained cocaine intended for sale in Alaska, then gave the drugs to Bledsoe, a Las Vegas McCarran International Airport employee.

Bledsoe used his credentials to bring the drugs into the airport without going through security, according to the indictment.

“Inside the terminal, Bledsoe would then meet with Blue or others after they had gone through security screening, and provide them with the drugs,” assistant U.S. attorney Frank Russo wrote in a news release.

The alleged co-conspirators would pack the cocaine into carry-ons and fly to Alaska and other states, according to the indictment. After the drugs were sold, the proceeds were shipped to Blue and others by mail, the news release says.

Law enforcement seized four packages containing $414,230. Federal court documents say the money parcels held $69,900 to $169,360, and all were mailed from Anchorage.

The government, through the indictment, seeks to seize cash and three vehicles -- a 2007 Cadillac Escalade, a 2006 BMW and a 2010 Mercedes Benz, all registered in Nevada. According to the indictment, the Cadillac has a “Veteran Army” license plate.

On June 1, the indictment alleges, Cole provided Blue money for drugs, and later that day went through security at McCarran International and walked to an Anchorage-bound flight. Blue gave 10 kilograms -- about 22 pounds -- of cocaine to Bledsoe, the airport employee, and they met in an airport bathroom. Cole and Blue reunited in another airport bathroom, and Cole allegedly stuffed his carry-on with cocaine, according to the indictment.

The news release says law enforcement seized cocaine in the airport that same day.

Court records indicate Cole was indicted in Alaska in mid-June for attempting to distribute the drugs. The two other men were arrested Tuesday night or Wednesday morning; they will make initial court appearances in Las Vegas.

The federal drug conspiracy charge carries maximum penalties of life in prison and a $10 million fine.