Alaska-bound drug package leads to $1M bust
Investigators say a man facing federal drug charges admitted to being a major Anchorage drug distributor, following the Monday seizure of more than $1 million in heroin and methamphetamine from a local home.
Federal records show Cheng Chiew Saechao, 28, is charged with possession with intent to distribute more than 1 kilogram of heroin. He was arrested on the charge Monday.
An affidavit supporting the charges against Saechao, written by Drug Enforcement Administration task force officer Joel Miner, said the case was prompted by postal inspectors’ interception of a package sent from California to Alaska. The package, containing nearly 10 pounds of meth, was targeted after a narcotics K-9 indicated it contained drugs.
Miner said Saechow was taken into custody “following his attempt to possess this methamphetamine.” A search warrant served at his home on Wildberry Loop, off Strawberry Road near Minnesota Drive, yielded roughly 4 kilograms of heroin and more than 4.4 kilograms of meth.
Saechao waived his Miranda rights, Miner said, in an interview with DEA investigators.
“Saechao admitted receiving pounds of heroin and methamphetamine in recent months and further admitted he intended to distribute the heroin throughout the Anchorage area,” Miner wrote. “Saechao related to law enforcement he conspired with other persons in the trafficking of multi-kilo quantities of heroin as well as the trafficking of multi-pound quantities of methamphetamine.”
Miner said the heroin seized from the home provides 10 doses a gram and typically sells for $175 to $250 per gram, indicating a street value of $700,000 to $1 million. In addition, the seized meth typically sells for $100 a gram – or more than $440,000.
Several law enforcement agencies assisted with the investigation, including APD's vice unit, Anchorage airport police, Alaska State Troopers and the Alaska National Guard's Counter Drug Support Program. Federal assistance was provided by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Homeland Security Investigations and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Acting U.S. Attorney for Alaska Bryan Schroder's office said Saechao was held pending a grand jury indictment, following an initial court appearance Tuesday. He was listed in custody Wednesday at the Anchorage Jail, according to a statewide inmate database.