Comments Off on San Diego: 22 indicted in ‘O-Dog’ racketeering & Methamphetamine trafficking conspiracy

Last September, Owen Michael Hanson, former USC player, known apparently in certain circles as ‘O-Dog’, was detained by FBI agents leaving a Carlsbad area Hyatt golf course.  Hanson, who enjoyed a privileged upbringing in Redondo Beach, Los Angeles, was arrested and indicted for drug conspiracy charges, including the delivery of 5 kilo grams of cocaine and 5 kilograms of methamphetamine.  Also charged the same day was Rufus Leon Rhone, in Los Angeles.imgresfhxh

At the same time, a half dozen men were arrested in Australia, including music promoter magnate Andrew McManus, in a money laundering, drug trafficking, and gambling case.  All the men were alleged to be involved in a wide ranging, global conspiracy to traffic drugs from Mexico into Australia and launder the proceeds, both down under, and in Las Vegas casinos.

At a bail hearing, AUSA’s detailed Hanson’s tactics, including sending DVD’s of beheadings (which may have been previously filmed, and not performed by the defendants) to insolvent customers, and directing debtors to be beaten and threatened.  They also detailed the illegal gambling business, based out of Costa Rica that Hanson ran and profited from.  Hanson was held without bail.

6 months later, the other shoe drops, as it often does in federal cases, and Hanson ‘O-Dog’ was named the lead defendant in a RICO conspiracy, including drug trafficking, money laundering, and illegal gambling.  No surprise, they came under the radar of San Diego FBI agents, after the arrest and likely cooperation of the Portecarrero brothers, Jan and Erick, who were indicted in San Diego, June 2013 on a gambling indictment, ran from Peru.

Pleading guilty and scheduled for a quick sentence in upcoming weeks is Leon Rhone, who has likely cooperated against Hanson.   Other lead defendants include Luke Fairfeld a San Diego based CPA, who allegedly laundered drug and gambling proceeds for the organization.  Kenny Hellenski, a fugitive is an expatriate living in Peru, who ran the gambling operations for Hanson.  A Los Angeles private investigator coordinated debt collection, and Derek Loville, a former Broncos, NFL player, 47, distributed drugs in Arizona on behalf of the crew.

The ODOG organization trafficked in cocaine, meth, heroin, and ecstasy, and sold drugs in retail and wholesale quantities, nationally and internationally.  The gambling is textbook, bookies, sub bookies, and runners took bets, in person, phone, and online and collected and laundered the proceeds to the company, based in Peru, or Costa Rica.  Many of the indicted are runners or bookies.

The charges are more serious than in the previous San Diego gambling based indictments, as drug trafficking charges and charges of organized crime are more serious than the ones faced by the Portecarrero brothers.  Another recently unsealed indictment is similar in scope, yet lacks the drug charges to up the minimum sentencing.

Nothing on the charges links the group to a Mexican trafficking organization in name, but it is likely they will attempt to indict another group, based on the cooperation of those arrested today, and previously.  And on it goes.  Assumedly up to the large scale traffickers, like Vicente Zambada Niebla, who may receive a sentence as low as 10 years, or Francisco Javier Arellano Felix, who….may be out in 10 years….justice and reason can be hard to find in the murky federal system….


Full indictment:

Sources: NBC San Diego, CBS8


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