Jump to content




Help Support AmtrakTrains.com by donating using the link above or becoming a Supporting Member.

Photo

Drugs moving by Amtrak - Southwest Chief? Texas Eagle?


  • Please log in to reply
34 replies to this topic

#1 Charles785

Charles785

    Train Attendant

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 37 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 13 September 2018 - 03:41 AM

I may be a bit behind on this because the story below is for a sentencing of a previously reported crime, but do we have any idea of the identity of the Amtrak insider who facilitated the drug-running, what his position was, and what train was involved?
 

Trafficker sentenced for shipping heroin, cocaine via Amtrak
 


By - Associated Press - Wednesday, September 12, 2018
 
CHICAGO (AP) - A California man has been sentenced to 35 years in prison for taking part in a drug-trafficking ring that used Amtrak trains to ship heroin and cocaine to Chicago from Los Angeles.
Edgar Roque of Paramount, California was sentenced Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Chicago by Judge Virginia M. Kendall. Roque pleaded guilty earlier this year to drug and money laundering charges.

 

 

 
https://www.washingt...roin-cocaine-v/


Edited by pennyk, 13 September 2018 - 07:28 AM.
edited for copyright issues


#2 caravanman

caravanman

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,303 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Nottingham, England.
  • Interests:Open minded travel, in which the journey is often as interesting as the destination...

Posted 13 September 2018 - 05:00 AM

No idea, but it could explain why so many Amtrak staff seem to be half asleep on the job,,, :D

 

Ed.



#3 the_traveler

the_traveler

    Engineer

  • Global Moderators
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 25,347 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Whatever siding I'm sitting on!
  • Interests:Looking at GPS to find out where I am at!

Posted 13 September 2018 - 07:19 AM

I am not saying that there was not, or could not have been, an insider, but it is known that many Amtrak trains are used to transport drugs. That is why you sometimes see a large LEO presence at some stops on routes like the SWC and CZ. Especially if someone buys a one way ticket with cash at the last minute,
  • Triley likes this
Take it easy .......

Take the train instead and enjoy the ride!

The view is much better at 3 feet than it is at 30,000 feet!

#4 tricia

tricia

    Conductor

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 672 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Spring Creek, NC

Posted 13 September 2018 - 09:07 AM

While I'm sure that sometimes Amtrak is used to transport drugs, I wonder how rare--or common--that is. And to what extent various law enforcement agencies are showing up at Amtrak stations simply to have another reason to justify their funding.


  • caravanman and daybeers like this

#5 crescent-zephyr

crescent-zephyr

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,206 posts

Posted 13 September 2018 - 09:38 AM

I've been questioned and had my luggage searched in Chicago by Amtrak police after boarding my Roomette on the Zephyr. I had bought a one way ticket from Chicago to Salt Lake City. They specifically asked if I had any drugs or large amounts of cash.

Pretty sure they just look at the manifest for men of a certain age traveling on a one way ticket to certain city pairs.

I've seen the "random" searches in Albuquerque and Reno too.. I always plan on being in the diner or lounge while stopped at Reno and off the train wandering while in Albuquerque to avoid them.

Also... I never buy tickets with cash (got to earn those bonus points!) so that doesn't seem to make a difference.

Amtrak: - Coast Starlight*, Pacific Surfliner, San Joaquin*, Cascades*, Empire Builder*, California Zephyr*, Southwest Chief*, City of New Orleans*, River Cities, Illinois Zephyr*, Wolverine, Cardinal, Capitol Limited*, Lake Shore Limited, Downeaster, Acela Express*, Crescent*, Carolinian*, Silver Star*, Silver Meteor*, Maple Leaf* Texas Eagle.

 

VIA: - Canadian*

 

Iowa Pacific - Hoosier State*, and City of New Orleans Pullman*.   


#6 Devil's Advocate

Devil's Advocate

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 9,994 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 13 September 2018 - 09:40 AM

I am not saying that there was not, or could not have been, an insider, but it is known that many Amtrak trains are used to transport drugs. That is why you sometimes see a large LEO presence at some stops on routes like the SWC and CZ. Especially if someone buys a one way ticket with cash at the last minute,

 

How many trains and how many drugs are we talking about?  What I mainly see are passengers of a certain mindset gleefully regaling us with vague stories about someone unknown to them being taken off a train.  I cannot recall any firsthand accounts of actual evidence, post departure searching, filed charges, acquittal/conviction, or anything else that would substantiate the original claim.  For all we know they were never charged and merely sent on their way with the next day's train.


Edited by Devil's Advocate, 13 September 2018 - 10:09 AM.

.


#7 BCL

BCL

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,643 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:San Francisco Bay Area

Posted 13 September 2018 - 10:14 AM

I'm sure all types of transportation are used to transport drugs.  However, Amtrak would seem to be a poor choice given the possibility of drug-sniffing dogs and that conductors could require baggage search on the threat of tossing a passenger.

 

Once it's in the United States, I would think private transportation (cars, trucks) would be the more likely means of transport.

 

However, one time I do recall overhearing someone on the CS talking about transporting "some really good bud", although I suspect it was for personal use.



#8 caravanman

caravanman

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,303 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Nottingham, England.
  • Interests:Open minded travel, in which the journey is often as interesting as the destination...

Posted 13 September 2018 - 10:25 AM

I assume it would be fairly easy for a member of the train crew to stash "items", they all have their own bags aboard. It could be a baggage handler or anyone who knew the system from the inside...

 

Ed.



#9 crescent-zephyr

crescent-zephyr

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,206 posts

Posted 13 September 2018 - 10:27 AM

Would it be 100% legal to take Amtrak with Marijuana from Denver to Grand Junction? But not so if you were taking it to Salt Lake? What about Denver to Portland but you travel through states where it's illlegal?

So many weird gray lines.

If a dog alerts my bag for drugs, but I've been in Colorado, is it right for that officer to now have the legal right to search my bag?

Amtrak: - Coast Starlight*, Pacific Surfliner, San Joaquin*, Cascades*, Empire Builder*, California Zephyr*, Southwest Chief*, City of New Orleans*, River Cities, Illinois Zephyr*, Wolverine, Cardinal, Capitol Limited*, Lake Shore Limited, Downeaster, Acela Express*, Crescent*, Carolinian*, Silver Star*, Silver Meteor*, Maple Leaf* Texas Eagle.

 

VIA: - Canadian*

 

Iowa Pacific - Hoosier State*, and City of New Orleans Pullman*.   


#10 Devil's Advocate

Devil's Advocate

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 9,994 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 13 September 2018 - 10:42 AM

Would it be 100% legal to take Amtrak with Marijuana from Denver to Grand Junction? But not so if you were taking it to Salt Lake? What about Denver to Portland but you travel through states where it's illlegal? So many weird gray lines. If a dog alerts my bag for drugs, but I've been in Colorado, is it right for that officer to now have the legal right to search my bag?

 

In the case of interstate transfer under current law it is 100% ILLEGAL to transport a restricted substance across state lines without a federal research or enforcement license or other expressed federal exemption.  In the case of intrastate transfer just because it's legal at the state level doesn't mean the federal government won't search and prosecute you for it just the same.  Previously this was largely (but not completely) ignored under Holder.  Today even relatively minor drug related offenses are being prosecuted to the fullest possible extent under Sessions.


Edited by Devil's Advocate, 13 September 2018 - 10:57 AM.

  • Triley and daybeers like this

.


#11 crescent-zephyr

crescent-zephyr

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,206 posts

Posted 13 September 2018 - 11:39 AM

So even inside the state where it's legal, an Amtrak police officer could charge you on a federal level? 


Amtrak: - Coast Starlight*, Pacific Surfliner, San Joaquin*, Cascades*, Empire Builder*, California Zephyr*, Southwest Chief*, City of New Orleans*, River Cities, Illinois Zephyr*, Wolverine, Cardinal, Capitol Limited*, Lake Shore Limited, Downeaster, Acela Express*, Crescent*, Carolinian*, Silver Star*, Silver Meteor*, Maple Leaf* Texas Eagle.

 

VIA: - Canadian*

 

Iowa Pacific - Hoosier State*, and City of New Orleans Pullman*.   


#12 Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 17,441 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Austin Texas
  • Interests:Passenger Trains/Travel/Sports/Gov't/ Politics/History/Reading/
    Movies/Music/Space-Ancient Aliens

Posted 13 September 2018 - 11:46 AM

So even inside the state where it's legal, an Amtrak police officer could charge you on a federal level? 

Yep, Goober and the Big Orange Turd are hell bent on putting "Hippies" in Jail!

Edited by Bob Dylan, 13 September 2018 - 11:46 AM.

  • cpotisch and John Santos like this
"There's Something About a Train! It's Magic!"-- 1970s Amtrak Ad
 "..My heart is warm with the friends I make,and better friends I'll not be knowing,
Yet there isn't a train I wouldn't take,No matter where its going!.." -Edna St. Vincent Millay

#13 PVD

PVD

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,240 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:NYC/Queens

Posted 13 September 2018 - 11:48 AM

Yes, it is clearly not legal on a Federal level.

Based on the length of the sentence as part of a plea deal, not after trial, it should be pretty obvious this was not a small isolated incident involving these people



#14 Jet Peddler

Jet Peddler

    Train Attendant

  • Training
  • Pip
  • 15 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Texas
  • Interests:Camping, Vespas, Motorcyles, Trains, Boy Scouting.

Posted 13 September 2018 - 12:36 PM

No idea, but it could explain why so many Amtrak staff seem to be half asleep on the job,,, :D

 

Ed.

 

I'd think with meth being a drug of choice these days, they'd be anything but asleep.  :)



#15 chakk

chakk

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,274 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 13 September 2018 - 02:26 PM

I'm sure all types of transportation are used to transport drugs.  


However, one time I do recall overhearing someone on the CS talking about transporting "some really good bud", although I suspect it was for personal use.


Maybe he was talking about beer.
  • aka_marian likes this

#16 BCL

BCL

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,643 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:San Francisco Bay Area

Posted 13 September 2018 - 03:24 PM

 

I'm sure all types of transportation are used to transport drugs.  


However, one time I do recall overhearing someone on the CS talking about transporting "some really good bud", although I suspect it was for personal use.


Maybe he was talking about beer.

 

You had to be there to understand the context.  And what the heck is "really good Bud"?



#17 BCL

BCL

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,643 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:San Francisco Bay Area

Posted 13 September 2018 - 03:35 PM

So even inside the state where it's legal, an Amtrak police officer could charge you on a federal level? 

 

They're legally federal law enforcement officers under a special status in the law.  It's kind of a combination.  They're legally railroad police, which are usually allowed by state law to enforced state/local laws.  They're also federal officers allowed to enforce federal laws without restriction.

 

That being said, it would matter what their priorities are.  Even federal law enforcement often have standing orders to make minor pot possession a low priority.



#18 daybeers

daybeers

    OBS Chief

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 380 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:HFD
  • Interests:Music, Singing, Computers, Stained Glass, Photography, Traveling, Running, Wikipedia

Posted 13 September 2018 - 03:55 PM

I am not saying that there was not, or could not have been, an insider, but it is known that many Amtrak trains are used to transport drugs. That is why you sometimes see a large LEO presence at some stops on routes like the SWC and CZ. Especially if someone buys a one way ticket with cash at the last minute,

How many trains and how many drugs are we talking about?  What I mainly see are passengers of a certain mindset gleefully regaling us with vague stories about someone unknown to them being taken off a train.  I cannot recall any firsthand accounts of actual evidence, post departure searching, filed charges, acquittal/conviction, or anything else that would substantiate the original claim.  For all we know they were never charged and merely sent on their way with the next day's train.

I don't know exactly what you're claiming. Are you saying the original claim is that there may have been an insider, and that that is false?

 

I'm sure all types of transportation are used to transport drugs.  


However, one time I do recall overhearing someone on the CS talking about transporting "some really good bud", although I suspect it was for personal use.

Maybe he was talking about beer.

You had to be there to understand the context.  And what the heck is "really good Bud"?

Bud is either short for Budweiser, a brewing company, or slang for marijuana.


Amtrak travel so far: only 11,218 miles: Springfield Shuttle (13), Northeast Regional (28), Acela (1), Lake Shore Limited (2), Pennsylvanian (2), Capitol Limited (1)

Ambus mileage (3 trips): 108

Other rail transit: WMATA (~900 miles), Metro-North, MTA, MBTA (Subway and Commuter Rail), Metra, CTA, RTA


#19 cpotisch

cpotisch

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 4,078 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Brooklyn, NY
  • Interests:Planes, Trains, Cooking, Politics

Posted 13 September 2018 - 04:03 PM

 

I am not saying that there was not, or could not have been, an insider, but it is known that many Amtrak trains are used to transport drugs. That is why you sometimes see a large LEO presence at some stops on routes like the SWC and CZ. Especially if someone buys a one way ticket with cash at the last minute,

How many trains and how many drugs are we talking about?  What I mainly see are passengers of a certain mindset gleefully regaling us with vague stories about someone unknown to them being taken off a train.  I cannot recall any firsthand accounts of actual evidence, post departure searching, filed charges, acquittal/conviction, or anything else that would substantiate the original claim.  For all we know they were never charged and merely sent on their way with the next day's train.

I don't know exactly what you're claiming. Are you saying the original claim is that there may have been an insider, and that that is false?

 

I'm sure all types of transportation are used to transport drugs.  


However, one time I do recall overhearing someone on the CS talking about transporting "some really good bud", although I suspect it was for personal use.

Maybe he was talking about beer.

You had to be there to understand the context.  And what the heck is "really good Bud"?

Bud is either short for Budweiser, a brewing company, or slang for marijuana.

Or a very mild abbreviation for the Budd Company!


Routes Traveled: Silver Meteor, Silver Star, CrescentLake Shore LimitedCalifornia Zephyr, Sunset Limited, Texas EagleEthan Allen Express, Empire Service, Maple Leaf, AdirondackAcela Express, Northeast RegionalKeystone Service, Downeaster w/ Great Dome
 
Wish List: Auto Train, Cardinal, CONO, Empire Builder, Southwest Chief, Crescent (overnight), Adirondack w/ Great Dome


#20 trainman74

trainman74

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,385 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Sherman Oaks, CA

Posted 13 September 2018 - 04:22 PM

And what the heck is "really good Bud"?

Bud is either short for Budweiser, a brewing company, or slang for marijuana.


I'm sure BCL knew this (both parts), and was questioning the concept of "really good Budweiser."




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users