Mount Vernon man sentenced to 10 years in prison for drug trafficking, gun crimes

SEATTLE — A 24-year-old Mount Vernon man was sentenced Wednesday to ten years in prison for drug trafficking while armed with multiple guns.

According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Washington, Santos Gutierrez-Fosella, a Mount Vernon resident, was arrested on Mar. 14, 2022.

“Mr. Gutierrez-Fosella took more than $130,000 to Arizona to load up on potentially deadly fentanyl pills – that conduct alone indicates he was a prolific drug distributor,” said U.S. Attorney Nick Brown. “When the Skagit County authorities tried to arrest him, he rammed a patrol car in a futile attempt to escape. In his pocket was a loaded 9mm ghost gun. His conduct posed a danger to the community on many levels.”

Law enforcement searched Gutierrez-Fosella’s car after the traffic stop and found more than 89,000 fentanyl pills, two kilos of methamphetamine, $10,000 in cash and four firearms.

Along with the loaded ghost gun, Gutierrez-Fosella also had $7,000 cash in his pocket at the time of his arrest.

He was charged with two others, Robert Johnny and Steven Lopez Ruiz, on Mar. 30, 2022.

Johnny, who purchased pills from Gutierrez-Fosella, was sentenced to six years in prison in January. Lopez Ruiz is scheduled for sentencing on April 5.

As part of the agreement to resolve the federal case, the Skagit County prosecutor agreed to settle its pending charges against Gutierrez-Fosella by accepting pleas to first-degree conspiracy to commit robbery, first-degree unlawful possession of a firearm, and third-degree possession of stolen property.

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