A Ballard man has been charged federally with selling marijuana to high school and middle school students, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Alejandro Castillo, 51, was arrested this morning on a criminal complaint charging him with conspiracy to distribute marijuana, two counts of distribution of marijuana and possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
Castillo faces up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 if convicted.
Surveillance of Castillo’s home a block north of Ballard High School and purchases by undercover officers revealed that he and his associates were repeatedly selling marijuana to students, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said. The complaint says a parade of students would make their way from Ballard High School to Castillo’s house, where they would purchase pot and marijuana-laced pastries.
Some of those drugs found their way to students as young of 12 years old at middle schools. Police learned of the alleged drug house after a parent of a middle-school student complained when his son came home “extremely high” the night before.
According to the criminal complaint, Seattle police detectives set up surveillance and watched students from Whitman Middle School and Ballard High School repeatedly go to Castillo’s home and leave with plastic bags of what appeared to be marijuana as they left. Police also conducted undercover buys, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
In one three-hour period beginning just before noon on April 5, officers said they watched “approximately 18 teenagers appearing to be tweeen the ages of 14 and 17 go to the Castillo residentce, staying just minutes before departing,” according to the federal complaint.
Police served a search warrant at the home on April 24, and found 1,200 grams of marijuana — about 2 1/2 pounds — nine trays of brownies, 11 firearms and $4,755 in cash. According to the complaint, Castillo said he would not sell pot to anyone under 13, telling them “you’re too young. Come back next year,” according to the charges.
Police said that Castillo had once fired a shot at two men armed with shotguns who tried to rob him. Nobody was injured.